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Decision-making for light rail

  • De Bruijn, Hans
  • Veeneman, Wijnand
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    In transport literature there is an ongoing discussion on the potential of light rail in mitigating congestion and supporting mobility around urban centres. Throughout Europe and the United States, many policy makers see light rail as an interesting option to improve the accessibility of urban centres. The Dutch national government wanted to support swift light rail realization in a number of promising situations. Several projects gained support from the national government for implementation. However, the decision-making on a local level was not nearly as swift as expected and not in line with the promise. This paper presents an analysis of that perceived slowdown and shows that the approach of the national government with a strict focus on light rail and a detachment from the local processes has played an important role in the slowdown. It shows that light rail can very well be a solid option. However, its successful implementation is not solely dependent on light rail suitability for the mobility patterns in the region, but very much on the approach of the implementation of those supporting the option.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice.

    Volume (Year): 43 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 4 (May)
    Pages: 349-359

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:transa:v:43:y:2009:i:4:p:349-359
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    1. Edwards, Marion & Mackett, Roger L, 1996. "Developing new urban public transport systems : An irrational decision-making process," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 225-239, October.
    2. Lane, Bradley W., 2008. "Significant characteristics of the urban rail renaissance in the United States: A discriminant analysis," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 279-295, February.
    3. Rubin, Thomas A. & Moore II, James E. & Lee, Shin, 1999. "Ten myths about US urban rail systems," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 57-73, January.
    4. Kain, John F. & Liu, Zvi, 1999. "Secrets of success: assessing the large increases in transit ridership achieved by Houston and San Diego transit providers," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 33(7-8), pages 601-624.
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