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The marginal social cost of headway for a scheduled service

  • Fosgerau, Mogens

This brief paper derives the marginal social cost of headway for a scheduled service, i.e. the cost for users of marginal increases to the time interval between departures. In brief we may call it the value of headway in analogy with the value of travel time and the value of reliability. Users have waiting time costs as well as schedule delay costs measured relative to their desired time of arrival at the destination. They may either arrive at the station to choose just the next departure or they may plan for a specific departure in which case they incur also a planning cost. Then planning for a specific departure is costly but becomes more attractive at longer headways. Simple expressions for the user cost result. In particular, the marginal cost of headway is large at short headways and smaller at long headways. The difference in marginal costs is the value of time multiplied by half the headway.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Transportation Research Part B: Methodological.

Volume (Year): 43 (2009)
Issue (Month): 8-9 (September)
Pages: 813-820

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Handle: RePEc:eee:transb:v:43:y:2009:i:8-9:p:813-820
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  1. Fosgerau, Mogens & Karlström, Anders, 2007. "The value of reliability," MPRA Paper 5733, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Small, Kenneth A, 1982. "The Scheduling of Consumer Activities: Work Trips," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(3), pages 467-79, June.
  3. A. de Palma & R. Lindsey, 2000. "Optimal Timetables for Public Transportation," THEMA Working Papers 2000-09, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
  4. Vickrey, William S, 1969. "Congestion Theory and Transport Investment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(2), pages 251-60, May.
  5. Mohring, Herbert, 1972. "Optimization and Scale Economies in Urban Bus Transportation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(4), pages 591-604, September.
  6. Panzar, John C, 1979. "Equilibrium and Welfare in Unregulated Airline Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(2), pages 92-95, May.
  7. Arnott, Richard & de Palma, Andre & Lindsey, Robin, 1993. "A Structural Model of Peak-Period Congestion: A Traffic Bottleneck with Elastic Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 161-79, March.
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