Charlotte County transit development plan : technical memorandum no. 2 : Evaluation of the potential for transit service

Charlotte County transit development plan : technical memorandum no. 2 : Evaluation of the potential for transit service

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Charlotte County transit development plan : technical memorandum no. 2 : Evaluation of the potential for transit service
University of South Florida. Center for Urban Transportation Research
Charlotte County-Punta Gorda Metropolitan Planning Organization
Place of Publication:
Tampa, Fla
Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR)
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Paratransit services--Florida--Charlotte County--Planning ( lcsh )
Local transit--Florida--Charlotte County--Planning ( lcsh )
Bus lines--Florida--Charlotte County--Planning ( lcsh )
letter ( marcgt )

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University of South Florida
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C01-00180 ( USFLDC DOI )
c1.180 ( USFLDC Handle )

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Charlotte County transit development plan : technical memorandum no. 2 : Evaluation of the potential for transit service
Tampa, Fla
b Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR)
c 1996 March
Paratransit services--Florida--Charlotte County--Planning.
Local transit--Florida--Charlotte County--Planning
Bus lines--Florida--Charlotte County--Planning
Charlotte County-Punta Gorda Metropolitan Planning Organization
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CHARLOTTE COUNTY TRANSIT DEVELOPMENT PLAN Technical Memorandum No 2: Evaluation of the Potential for Transit Service Prepared for tbe Charloe County-Punta Gorda Metropolitan Planning Organization CUTR by tbe Center for Urban Transportation Research College of Engineering University of South Florida Marcb 1996


Charlotte County-Punta Gorda Metropolitan Planning Organization 28000 Airport Road A-6 Punta Gorda, Florida 33982-2411 (941) 639-4676 Director: Staff: Fax (941) 639-8153 Lisa B. Beever, Ph.D., AICP Preston J. Elliott Center for Urban Transportation Research University of South Florida 4202 E. Flower Avenue, ENB 118 Tampa, FL 33620-5350 (813) 974-3120 Sun com 57 4-3120 Fax (813) 974-5!68 Director: Project Manager: Gary L. Brosch Rosemary G. Mathias Laura Lachance Project Staff: Reviewers: Dan Rudge Eric Hill Baichan Chen Dennis Hinebaugh Joel Volinski


TABLE OF CONTENTS Overview ............................. .......... .......... . ... ............ 1 Thresholds for Transit ...... .................................................. 3 Review ofPeer Counties ........................................ .... ........ 5 Community Transportation Coordinator Peer Review Analysis ............... .... 5 T ransit Pe er Review . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Beach Shuttle Service in F lorida Communities .... ... .............. .... ............ 23 Transportation Characteristics of Beach Communities .......................... 23 Transit Service in Beach Communities .................... . . ....... ..... 24 Potential Service in Charlotte County ..... ..... ...... . ......... ........... 27 Transportation Demand Management Options .............. ....................... 29 Ridesharing ..... .................. ........................... ....... 29 Alternative Wor k Hours ..... : ................................. ... ..... 31 Telecommuting ............................ ....................... . . 33 Parking Management .................................................... 34 HOV Lanes .................................... ............ . ........ 34 Pedestrian and Bicyc l e Alternatives ........................ ..... ... ... ... 35 Transportation Management Organizations ............ ...... .......... .. ..... 36 Trip Reduction Ordinances .... .... ... .................................. 36 Summary ............ ............................... ..................... 37 I


Table I Table 2a Table 2b Table 3a Table 3b Tabl e 4 Table 5 Tab l e 6 LIS T O F TABL ES S iz e/Concentration of Deve l opment (Residential and Workpla ce) ..... .... . 3 Demographics of Peer CTCs ... . . .... ........ . . .... .... .... . . . 7 Demograph i cs of Other Selected CTCs ......... ... ..... . .... .... . . 8 Performance Measures of Peer CTCs .................. . . . ...... I 0 Perform ance Measur es of Other Selected CTCs .............. ....... . I 0 Local Governmen t R e v e n u e for CTC Peers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . I I Urbanized Area Demographics of Peer Transit Systems ........ ....... . 1 7 Performance Indicators of Peer Transit System s .... .... .... ........ 18 11


F igure I Figure 2 Figure3 F igure 4 Fig ure 5 Figure 6 Figure? Figure 8 F igure 9 LIS T OF F I G URES Population, Potential TO Population, TO Population ............. ... .. .. 6 Passenger Trips . ............................... . . ...... ..... 12 Vehicle M il es Per TD Capita . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Operation Expenses Per Passenger T rip .. ........ ............. . ...... 13 Operation Expenses Per Vehicle Mile . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Vehicle Miles Per Passenger Trip . . . . . . .. .. .. . . .. . . . 14 Total Revenue ......................... ...... . .... ....... ... 14 Fare box Ratio ................................... ............ .... 15 County Share in Total Revenue ............ . ..................... 15 lll




Charlotte County ,. ' ... Pote11Ual for Traruit Overview Technical Memorandum No. 2 i ncludes info!lilation used to evaluate the potential for vario u s types o f p u blic transportation service in Charlotte County. The fust section reviews the thresholds at whicl). certain types of transit systems become viable The second section compares Charlotte County to various peer groups including community transportation coordinator peers (paratransit) and potential fixed-route transit system pe e rs The third section describes beach shuttle services in other Florida communitie s The fourth section describes transportation demand management strategies and their potential applicability to Charlotte Cotmty Teclmical Memorandum No. 2 Pagel


Potentia/for Transit Char/one Coumy PAGE LEFT BLANK INTENTIONALLY Page2 Technical Memorandum No. 2


Char/01/e Co11nty Potential Jar Transit Thresholds for Transit Transit is a transportation mode that requires a relatively high density of trips for it to be successful. Typically this has meant fairly long routes serving a corridor radiating out from a region's central business district (CBD). Work trips are most readily served because of their spatial concentration (CBD) and time (peak hours). Suburban environments less frequently provide a sufficient concentration of jobs per square mile, and usually tend to draw workers from a more widely scattered area than the traditional transit corridor. Table I provides guidelines o n the size and concentration of workplace and residential development needed to justify various forms of transit serv 1 ce Bus Intermediate Local Bus Local Bus Express Bus/ W a lk Access Express Bus/ Light Rail Rapid Rail Commuter Rail Table 1 Size/Concentration of Development (Residential and Workplace) 60 4 30 7 10 15 30 15 20 3 5 9 5 1 2 ove. r 100.150 45 1.5 is the time transjt vehicle arrivals. 3.5 7 so 20 30 so 75 1"Downtown' is defmed as a contiguous cluster of non-residential use and is larger than the more narrowly defined CBD. Source: Plan Tech11ical Memorandum No. 2 Page3


Potential for Transit Charlotte County The transit senices identified in Table I are defined as follows: Minimum Local Bus: Bus service with beadways of approximately 60 minutes at peak use. Intermediate Local Bus: Bus service with headways of approximately 30 minutes at peak use. Frequent Local Bus: Bus service with headways of approximately 10 minutes at peak use. Express Bus/Walk Access: A bus that operates a portion of the route without stops or with a limited number of stops which people access by walking. Express Bus/Drive Access: A bus that operates a portion of the route without stops or with a limited number of stops which people access by driving and parking. Light Rail: An electric railway with a "light volume" traffic capacity compared to "heavy rail." Light rail may use shared or exclusive rights-of-way high or low platform loading, and multi-or single car trains. Heavy or Rapid Rail: An electric railway with the capacity for a "heavy volume" of traffic and characterized by exclu sive rights-of-way, multi-car trains, high speed and rapid acceleration, sophisticated signaling, and high platform loading Commuter Rail: Local and regional passenger train operations between a central city, its suburbs, and/or another central city. A detailed threshold analysis for Charlotte County will be included in Task Vl Estimate Demand and Assess Needs. Page -1 Tet:hnical Memorandum No. 2


Charlotte County .. .' ... .... ... : : ; Potential for Transit Review of Peer Counties In this section CUTR compared demographic characteristics of Charlotte County to similar communities with various types of public transportation gystems The first part contains a demographic review of peer community transportation coordinators (erCs) i n Florida. In addition to a comparison of demographic characteristics, this review compares performance measures for these transportation disadvantaged (TD) gystems. The second part contains a review of transit gystem peers. Because Charlotte County does not operate a fiXed-route system this review includes areas that have similar geographic characteristics, population size and density, and level of affluence. Community Transportation Coordinator Peer Review Analysis Charlotte County Transit Department (CerD) is the local CTC. CUTR compared CCTD to its CTC peers, which were selected because of their similarity based on the following five categories: Demographic characteristics. System size (measured in terms of annual TD ridership). Operating environment (urban or rural service area designation). Organization type (transit agency, government, private non-profit or private for-profit) Network type (sole provider, partial brokerage, or complete brokerage). According to the Evaluation Worlcbook for Community Transportation Coordinators and Providers in Florida, prepared by CUTR, the Charlotte County CTC is categorized as a "size 4" system (with 100,000199,999 annual one-way passenger trips), operates in an urban service area (contains an urbanized area, with a population of more than 50,000), is organized as a governmental entity, and coordinates trips as a partial brokerage. The five counties that were selected for the ere peer review include: Bay (Panama City), Hernando (S pring Hill), Indian River (Vero Beach), Okaloosa (Fort Walton Beach), and St. Lucie (Fort Pierce) Not all of these ercs are identical with CCTD; however, they generally share similar demographic and systematic characteristics (see Table 2a and Figure I). In addition, Brevard, Manatee, Pasco, and Sarasota counties were included in a s\}parate analysis of CTCs that have noteworthy similarities to Charlotte County's ere but are not true peers (see Table 2b and Figure I). (Brevard, Manatee, and Sarasota counties already have public transit and can be used as references for a potential transit system in Charlotte County.) Technical Jllemorandum No. 2 PageS


Potential for Transit Charlotte Count)' Figure 1. Populatioo, Poteotial TD Population, TD Population 500.000-, 300.000 200,000 100,000 0 lndlln Rlvtl MMnllldO Okatoou 0 Total Population TO Popu l ation Comparative Demographics ---.,--, S1ruo!a Potential TO Population Figure I, and Tables 2a and 2b contain information for each of the I 0 peer counties on total population median age, estimates of transportation disadvantaged persons, population density employment density, percentage of families below the poverty level median household income, and percentage of households with no access to a vehicle. Compared to the counties contained in Table 2a, Charlotte County is below the average in total population, population density, and employment density, but is above the average i n median age, potential TO population (TO Category!), and TD population (TD Category II). (Information on population is also p r esented in Figure 1.) In addition Charlotte County, in comparison to the peer counties has the lowest percentage of families below the poverty level, but is be low the average in median household income. Charlotte County also has the lowest percentage of households with no access to a vehicle. Comparative Performance FY 1995 performance measures for CCTD and each of its peer CTCs are shown in Table 3a (with other selected CTCs shown in T able 3b) as well as in Figures 2 through 9. In general, Charlotte County Transit Department provides lower than average trips per TD capita, has a lower than average cost per trip, and has shorter trips than its peers. CCTD ranks fourth and fifth (out of six) in terms of passenger trips and vehicle miles per TD capita (defined as potential TD population) respective l y (see Figure 2 and Figure 3) Page6 Technical Memorandum No. 2


:;1'1 ;; 2. .... il .... 138,400 I 34.51 120,6o1 I 48.71 Table2a Demographics of Peer CTCs 12,966 188 48 ,092 13,793 181 63, 911 11,572 252 River I 100,199 43.6 43,697 7,593 199 159,896 33.2 42,793 10,579 171 Lucie I 173,098 38.4 74,974 16,074 302 137, 099 41.7 5 6 ,826 1 2,096 216 TD Population is also referred to as "TD Category 1." is also referred to as "TD Category II. U .S. Bureau of the Census (1990). 55 70 66 70 63 107 72 Commission for the Transpon ation Disadvantaged: 1995 Annual Performance Report, FY 1994-1995. 5.2% $25, 746 11.2% $24 684 6.6o/c 7 .9"/o S22,741 5.So/c 5 .9"/o $28 ,961 6.0o/c 7 .8% $27 ,941 8.5% $27 710 7.8% S26,297 Q I{ . J : i ,.. \ I -;; .;; .. ., I[


;; .. : !; !t .... ll;> ... Table 2b Demographics of Otber Selected CTCs .. ..,._,;; .. .. 'Hf -< .. .. I> ; .''': ...... _. ,,._t:c$; .. .. . '. >.< 'f':: ;, .. ... ;(::')': ... : :i i PO' Deilsitf . _.,, . ,;.,,x -, ''" ;.: -' . />) lt' tHt'.-,.-, ''> -" > < -' t ,., __ ).. ,_ ., > .,., ;; )' ;{ . ,, ._ .. .. >f""-"; ')-''. ""''"'e -... -!'.,.,. ;;";_;':<. .. "-t o!! rop: : Medlin Potential TD :'YlY- < P6P.. (Emp/Sq, 'tCourttY ''Age. f Milt) .. jC'O > (F. 199;1) (1990) (FV 1994-MJIO);i .. ,,_,_ ,,,,.,.,. . . ; ;.. "; '>"'' <-_.,_ _,_. -'>;;.n < _,., _, 95) i _,;_. ,, ; ;;: j; . H ". ._., 1 \ .. ,.. "' .. ) ; ) "' .. "' ::. .. _,,,_,._ ._,,.,,,._ . _,, '" '..;,..A Brevard 446,703 38 .2 152,548 28, 142 438 180 Manatee 232,702 43.7 105,351 21,235 314 118 Pasco 306,401 47.6 158,077 33,561 411 131 Sarasota 301,302 49.7 139,473 23,177 521 200 Average 321,777 44 8 13 8,864 26,529 423 157 Potential TD Population is also referred to as "TD Category 1." 'TD Population is also referred to as "TO Category II." Sources: U.S. Bureau of the Census (1990) . Pel. of . ...... ,-->><, Fa mill<$ . .B.-Med\Jin Into me _,_, < '' $30,534 $25,951 $21,480 $29,919 $26,971 . of Households .. with No Access to Vehide (1990) 5.5'1< 6.7% 6.8'1< 6.2% 6 .3% s '<;> Q ;:; "' Q ii -


Charlotte County Potential for Transit With respect to operating expenses per passenger trip (paratransit), CCTD compares favorably with i ts peers, ranking second lowest among the six CTCs (see Figure 4). Operating expense per vehicle mile is slightly below the average of its CTC peers; however, Charlotte County was only performing better than Hernando and St. Lucie counties in this category (see Figure 5). The difference between operating expenses per passenger trip and operating expenses per vehicle mile may be attributable to the relatively short TD trips in Charlotte County (see Figure 6). Because most of the vehi cle operating expenses are fixed, the shorter trips would cost more per vehicle mile while costing Jess per passenger trip. To illustrate, Charlotte County has shorter average trips (3.34 miles) in comparison to the peers, a higher operating expense per vehi cle mile ($2.02) than most of its peers, and a lower operating expense per passenger trip ($6.76) rela:tive to most of its peers. Conversely, Okaloosa Col.lllty has longer average trips (6.32 vehicle miles), a lower operating expense per vehicle mile ($1.23), and a higher operating expense per passenger trip ($7.76), re l ative to its peers. With respect to the revenue measures, the Charlotte County CTC has the smallest total revenue among all the peers (see Figure 7). Such a small amount of funds may constrain the number ofTD trips provided and vehicle miles per TD capita. Zero percent of the revenue was gathered from farebox, as shown in Figure 8. Among all the CTCs, Hernando County has the highest farebox ratio, which is 5. 7 percent of total revenue. Nearly one quarter of the CCTD revenue came from the county government, ranking it the highest in county government's share of total revenue (see F igure 9). Comparatively, the Okaloosa county government contributed nothing to theCTC's total revenue. In addition, Table 4 presents a more detailed breakdown of the local contributions to CCTD and its peers. Overall, given the relatively large service area and small amount of revenue, Charlotte Col.lllty CTC compares well with its CTC peers. These comparisons provide helpful insight into how well Charlotte County appears to be performing statistically, but should not be used as the sole measures to make inferences about the quality of service. Technical Memorandum No. 2 Page9


Potentia/for Transit Charlotte c()UniJ Tabl e 3a Performance Measu r es of Peer CfCs Yeb.Mile/ < Fare-C o unty Co un ty Passe n ger TP Oper.Expl OJ?toWitj .. Coun:ty .Pass e n ger TD Oper.l:xpl Oper.l: x p/ Veh.(lflle/ Total box Revt'Ouc ; . 'I Tri ps I { Capiia Pass Tri p I Pass.Trip Revenue Rat i o !UUo -'. c; Brevard 719,875 28 .02 $7.52 $1.16 5.94 $4,938,246 4 .1% 19.1% Manatee 195,445 6.07 $9 .04 $2.42 3.27 $ 1,371,404 3 .0"/o 19.6% Pasco 255, 080 8.42 S8.72 $1.47 5 92 $1,962 340 2.0"/o 11.7% Sarasota 161,722 6.56 $8.54 $1.51 5.66 $1,380,331 2.0% 41. 2 % Average 333,031 12. 27 $8.46 $1.64 5.20 $2,413 080 2.8% 22 9% Source: Commission for the Transportalion Disadvantaged: 1995 Annual Performance Report, FY 1994-1995. Page 10 Technical Memorandum No. 2


Charlo tte County Potential jor Transit Table4 Local CTC Peers Charlotte $700,750 $331,636 $99, 623 $56,710 S 175 303 Bay $1,125,124 $ 1 52,302 $5,310 so S146,992 $984,668 $57,100 $57,100 so $0 Indian River $1,087,71 3 $192,611 $ 177,611 so $15 ,00 0 Oka1oosa $1,083,033 $1,982 so so $1,982 St. Lucie $852,418 $34,600 so so $34,600 $4,938 ,246 SI,036,312 $945,020 so $91,292 Manatee $1,371,404 $277,003 $268.498 so $8,505 Pasco $1, 962,340 $229 701 $229,637 so S64 Sarasota $ 1,380, 331 $569,354 $569,354 so $0 *Included in Local Government Reven.ue. Source: Commission for the 1995 AMual Perfonnanoe FY 1994-95. Teclm/ca/ Memorandum No. 2 Page 11


Potenlio/for Transit Charlot t e Count y Figure 2. Passenger Trips 800,000-,-------------700,000-'-------------------_,--, 600,000 t -------500,000 T --------300.000 I ---------Mean 200,000 -----1 oo .ooo .. I n d ian River St. L uoie Cha rlo tt e Hernan d o Figure 3. Vehi cle Miles Per TD Capita I :-"T_ I Mean J < ____ j or---------------------::7 ---']? x? .. ---------sr---' -----"fl '::_ ,);.:-" 2 of-:----t'jt :.' ----fl;; --------< -I ... --- ;!:; -. -5 ;,.; ------. :: --.. r'71 f" ., ,. :, )J:;f" Sf .. 0 eo I Indian RIYar I St. l. u cio I 8ravatd I Paaoa I y MaRat&e SaraiJOta Chartotta Pagel2 Technical Mem orandum No. 2


Cho.rlolfe County Potential for Transit Figure 4. Operation Expenses Per Passenger Trip $14 $12 .,. $8 $8 $4 $2 $0 lndlen Rtvor Pasco Cha r lotto Horn.ancfo Okatoosa Manatee Saraaota Figare S. Operation Expenses Per Vehicle Mile I Mean $4 $1 Indian River Pasco Chat1otte Hamando Okalooaa Mant&e Sarasota Technical Memqrandum No. 2 Page 13


Potentia/for Ttanslt Charlotte County Figure 6. Vehicle Miles Per Passenger Trip 1 Bay Indian Rhoer St. Lucie Brevetd Paaco H1mado Ohloo&a Manatee Saruota Figure 7. Total Revenue $$,000,000 ... -------------------.=...--.... --------, Mean $4. 000,000 $3.000,000 $2.000,000 --,.,....,. $1,000 000 Bay IMSian Rlvor $1. Lucio Ch trlottt Hamamto Okaloou Pmo Mana1ee Stflll011 PageU Technical Memorandum No. 2


Charlotte County Poten tial for Tromlt "' 1% I ndian RlYe.t St. luCie Hetnal\cfo Okaloou Sarasota Figure 9 County Share in Total Revenue 40 % --------------------------30% --------------------------20 % 10% Say Indian River Her nando Okalooaa Man atee Saraaola Chattotle Teclmica/JIIemorandum No. 1 Page 15


Pmential jor Charlotte County Transit Peer Review For the transit peer review CUTR compared Charlotte County against other similar Sunbelt cities that have fixed-route transit systems. These peers were chosen based on similar population geographic characteristics, and/or level of affluence. The purpose of the review is to identify potential types of public transporta tion for Charlotte County. The selected peers include: Manatee County, Florida; Amarillo, Texas; Beaumont, Texas; Albany, Georgia; and San Angelo, Texas (Sarasota County and Brevard County were not included in this analysis because of the relatively large sizes of their transit systems. A discussion of discontinued fixed-route transit services offered in Pasco and Okaloosa counties is included. The other CTC peers were not included because they do not have fixed-route transit.) Comparative Demographics Table 5 contains selected demographics by urbanized area for the peer communities including: urbanized area population, population density, employment density the percent of families below the poverty level, and the percent of households with no access to a vehicle. The peer group averages for each characteristic, including Charlotte County, are shown in the last column of the table. As shown in T able 5 Charlotte County' s urbanized area population, population density, and employment density are below the average of the peer group with population being almost half the average. Population density and employment density were chosen for analysis because of their relationship to the success of fixed-route transit. The percentage of families below the poverty level and the percentage of households with no access to a vehicle in Charlotte County also were below the peer averages. A large percentage for these two characteristics could indicate a community's dependence on public transportation. In addition to these selected demographic characteristics, the availability of parking and its cost, and the general level of congestion also were considered in the comparative analysis. With few exceptions, the peer areas parking is plentiful and relatively inexpensive or free. Therefore, parking was not an issue for any of the communities including Charlotte County. Likewise, congestion was not a major issue in any of the peer communities, with the exception of isolated corridors during peak travel periods. Page 16 Technical MemOTDndum No. 2


Charlotte County pqtentialfor Transit Table 5 Urbanize d Area Demographics of Peer Transi t Sys t ems County' 5 .1% County' 187,737 1,771 722 7.0% Georgia 87,078 1,226 489 20.3% Texas 157,867 1,794 832 13.0% Texas 122,791 1 ,350 580 1 5.8% Angelo, Texas 85,435 1,743 733 13. 7 % 117 ,990 1,548 640 12.5% Punta Gorda U r banized Area only County portion of the Sarasota-Bradenton Urbanized Area. 1993 Transit Profiles: Agencies in Urbanized Areas with a Population of Less Than 200,000. 1993 Ttansit Profiles: Agencies in Urbanized Areas Exceeding 200,000 Population. U.S. Bureau of the Census Comparati ve Performance Performance inclicators and serv i ce characteristics for the selected transit systems are contained in Table 6. For comparison characteristics of Charlott e County's CTC system were included in Table 6, but were not included in the averages Th e average number of unlinked pa s senger trips was 917,893 for the peer transit systems with a range of254,470 trips for San Angelo to 1 457,126 trips for Beaumont (these figures include fixed route service on ly). F or comparison, Charlotte County's coordinated transportation system provided I 03, 676 trips in 1995. The peer averages for annual revenue miles and annual service hours were 478 932 miles and 33, 306 hours, respectively. The average annual operating expense for the peer transit systems was $1,229,825. By comparison, Charlotte County CTC' s operating expense for FY 1995 was $700,750, which is difficult to compare to the peer average because of the different services being offered. Technical Memorandum No. 2 Page 17


;)> 0:! ... .. :;! s. ;; 2. il ll ... Tabl e 6 Performa n ce I n dicators o f Peer Trans i t Systems ,; -""'"" . ,-._, _, '< '<"<'. .. c<'-_., > , "'" it'"'" ,_ .... .... ,, : ; ""' cV> ; c.UL><. _,:, :"_ ._,,._,. '/'t't 1 : ''" :r::c_,-,. t, 'K4. __. -:' ,_,_,_ ":>. .-. '.,., ... ---:4-+'-><..; Annual ..... '" .-&;;.-, 1:; ,;: .. llrlh;;..--;; -<'t;-.)\ ... ,., ,. ,. . .-;-o<;-:/':-) < A '*' 'RiVirtU"i SCfViCe ") <'If;,;;:;;,_ ... < ' .. :, :r& --.< .. assc r . 'ij' ... ,t. i 'f.i.'l!'"' -''\(.'---<*"""'-"' """ ... !> '( ' .. *" ours ? ".f .. ... $-'' :_:::;(, t .. .. ... ......... -4-ll> > .,_,.,.,_ ..! "'' . ... :'' Charlotte County' 130,397 693 103,676 3 4 6 74 4 24,960 $700,750 NA (UZA 75,4342 ) (UZA48'} Manatee County 181,684 747 625,897 533,693 34,178 $1.556,944 $1.00 Albany, Georgia 50,200 17 I ,359,537 403,026 28,894 $8 5 3 ,130 $0.60 Amarillo Texas 95,869 26 892,436 680,708 44,277 $1,508 ,283 $0.60 Beaumont, Texas 82,731 41 1.457,126 536,364 41,601 $1, 694,500 $0.75 San Angelo. Texasl 84, 470 so 254,470 2 4 0,870 17,580 $536,270 $0.75 Average 98.991 176 917,893 478,932 33,306 $1,229,825 $0. 74 Charlotte County data based on 1995 infonnation for the paratransit system. Urbanized area infonna t ion including Punta Gor da/Port Charlotte. 1 99 1 lnfonnation, 1993 infonnation was unavailable. Averages do not include Charlotte County Sources: Commission for the Transportation Disadvantaged: 1995 Annual Perfonnance Report, FY 1994-1995. 1993 Transit Profiles: Agencies in Urbanized Areas wit h a Population of Less Than 200,000. 1993 Transit Profiles: Agencies in Urbanized Areas Exceeding 200,000 Population. Phone interviews with local transit officials. '" '"'-'' ",.,.. -;; ; .,;;: .... ,. -" -. ;:-(' !'II r _; y.;, _;- 0 : 0 '*" :No. or ViiJ>idei Headway (tW)' :,;{:;,-::> __ .Y. tn. "'. ..... _:;.,, ... ,.y ;..u-, .. NA NA 16 (4) 10 60 18 (18) 8 60 9 (5) 8 30 17 (17) 9 30-45 16 (S) 5 60 8 (8) 8 50 13. 6 (10.6) Site of Vehicles .. Variou 30 fl ( 2 9 seats) 35 0. (36 seats 30 fl (22 scats 35ft (36 seats Troll'} (28 seats NA ;? ,. .. ';;-' !;! a .. g !l .,. g cy


Charlotte Cou11ty Potentia/for Transit All of the peer transit sy stems reported charging a fare ranging from $0.60 to $1.00 ($0.74 on average). The nwnber of routes operated b}' tlit ranged from 5 to I 0 with an average of 8. Headways ranged from 30 to 60 minutes, with an average of 50 minutes. The average fleet size of the peer systems ranged from 8 to 18 vehicles, with an average of 14; most vehicles were lift equipped. Vehicle sizes ranged from trolley-type buses, to 30or 35-foot buses (slightly smaller than traditional40-foot transit buses). Each of the peer systems is described in more detail below. Information is based on telephone interviews and Section 15 reports. Description of Peer Transit Systems Manatee County Florida Manatee County, Florida, is located South of Tampa Bay on Florida's West Coast and has an urbanized area population of 187,73 7 persons. The transit agency serves the urbanized area of Manatee county including the city of Bradenton. Ten routes are operated by the transit agency using 30-foot, lift-equipped vehicles The transit agency also operates the complementary paratransit service mandated by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). Albany, Georgia Albany Georgia, a river town located in the southern part of the state, has an urbani zed area of 87,078 persons. The city is characterized by older densely developed neighborhoods near the center of t own and less dense l y developed areas on the outskirts of town where all new developmen t is taking place. The system operates eight routes covering the city limits of Albany using nine 35-foot buses that seat approximately 36 people. The transit agency, however, is considering replacing the current vehicles with 30-foot buses because of cost and a smaller demand for transit service. As stated, current service is only within the city limits of Albany; however, future service is being considered to serve major employers outside of the city. The transit !'gency also operates complementary pardtr.msit service, as required by ADA, with three vehicles. It is looking into coordination of the fixed-route and paratransit service Technical Memorandum No. 2 Page/9


Potential for Transit Cftarlolle County Amarillo Texas Amarillo Texas is an urbanized area with a population of 157,867. Amarillo was settled as a railroad town and continues to draw from a large rural area. According to the transit agency, the city is experiencing urban sprawl with a large majority of business moving out of the central business district into outlying areas. The land use densities around the bus routes are mixed with some of the older areas being multi-family residential and some single-family residential. The transit system operates only within the city limits of Amarillo but covers the majority of the city with eight routes that all connect at a downtown transfer point. Most trips on the system are for work and medical appointments. The transit system also operates ADA complementary paratransit service and is currently trying to recertify passengers to encourage more ridership on the fixed-route system. In addition, the transit agency is considering establishing a paratransit feeder service for the fixed-route system in order to coordinate the fixed-route and complementary paratransit systems. Beaumont, Texas Beaumont Texas, is an urbanized area of 122,791 persons locat ed near the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. The community grew quickly until the early 1980's when the oil boom went bust, resulting in spread out development within the community. Beaumont's transit system operates within the city limits w ith nine routes which all connect at a downtown transfer station. The fixed-route and ADA complementary paratransit service have been operated by a single private contractor since 1974. However, the fixed-route and paratransit systems are run independently of ooe another. San Angelo, Texas San Angelo Texas, is a small urbanized area of 85,435 persons in the western part of Texas. The city and surrounding areas have relatively low population densities with new development reaching farther out of the city. Public transportation has a long history in San Ange l o, being offered since the 1930s Currently, the transit agency operates open-air trolleys on five routes within the city limi t s which covers 50 square miles. All of the routes meet and transfer at a downtown historic depot. The transit Pag<20 Technical !ttemorondum No. 2


Charlotte Cotmty Potential for Transit :. . agency reports that it is not satisfied with the durability of the trolleys and is considering replacing them with other vehicles with a similar capacity. The buses operate on 60-minute headways and charge a regular fare of 75 cents. The transit agency also operates the complementary paratransit service b u t maintains no active coordination between the fixed-route and paratransit systems The transit agency has observed that ridership has continually shifted from the fixed-route system to the complementary paratransit system. Discontinued Peer Transit Services Infonnation also was gathered from two Florida counties that operated fixed-route transit systems that were discontinued: Okaloosa and Pasco. Identifying possible factors that contributed to the failure of these two systems could be helpful in detennining whether additional public transportation is appropriate for Charlotte County. Okaloosa County Florida According to the Okaloosa County FiveYear Transit Development Plan, 1993-1997, the system that was operated in Okaloosa County began in February 1978. It was compostcd of several type s of service including two fixed routes in the Fort Walton Beach area, route deviation and subscription service in less densely populated areas, and demand responsive serv i ce for persons with disabilities and elderly residents of the county. Despite the flexibility bu ilt into the system in an effort to accommodate the various trip needs of county residents, the system failed to generate the type of ridership local officials had expected. A combination of factors probably contributed to low ridership including undefmable residential and commercial areas, an Air Force test range that splits the county into two distinct sections, no parking problems or congestion, and no revenue contribution by the county government. The service was discontinued in March 1981. Three additional reasons were suggested by county officials in this report as causing the system to fail: (I) an inadequate organizational structure; (2) an ineffective operational design; and (3) a changing political environment. Technical Memorandum No. 2 Page21


PQtentialjor Transit Clrarlotle Cou n ty Pasco County, Florida I n Pasco County, fixed-route service was started in 1989. The service included three fixed-routes that provided service in the U.S I 9 corridor (similar to U.S 4 I in Charlotte County). Service operated Monday through Sarurday, fro m 8:00a.m to 5:00p. m The service operated on 60 minute headways and served a primarily retired ridership market. Pasco County reports that the average daily ridership on the fix e d-rou t e service was between 300 and 400. The fixed-route service was coordinated with the demand-responsive service, which was established at the same time. Fixed-route service in Pasco County was discontinued in 1991. According to transit officials, foremost among the reasons for discontinuing service was a failure to follow objective service standards. During the opera t ion of the s e rv ice in Pasco, severa l changes were made to the fixed routes to accommodate vocal political constituencies Residents a l so hired traffic engineers to make recommendations on service changes independent of city officials Implemen t ation of recommendations caused confusion for res idents that were dependent on the service. Additiona ll y the service was operated using 40-foot buses that were leased from another transit agency. According to the transit department, these vehicles were old and becam e unreliable. Also, because of their size, the buses were difficult to operate on local s t ree t s Page22 Technical Memorandum No. 2


Charlotte CtJUnfy Potential for Transit . B e a c h S hu tt l e Service i n F lo rida Communities This section swnmarizes the resul ts of a survey of F l orida beach communities that operate beach shuttle services to accommodate significant beach population and visitors. The survey was conducted in 1995 by CUTR. T he Florida Department of Community Affairs Directory of Planning Officials was used to identify the appropriate city official to contact for the survey The directory includes the names of mayors, city officials, p lanning directors, and traffic engineers w h o are responsib l e for transportation planni n g in Florida cities. Infonnation collected about beach communities included road and/or parking capacity problems, transit service in the community, and the approaches used to resolve traffic circulation problems Transportation Characteristics of Beach Com m uni ties In general the beach communities surveyed reported traffic circulation problems resulting from residents and visitors traveling to the beach Many cities surveyed are on a barrier island, which is typical of m ost beach communities in F l orida. Several of Florida's barrier islands are between I and 5 miles long and I to 2 miles This limited land space hinders opportunities for improving traffic circulation by increasing capacity on local roads. Many of these barrier islands have li mited access to/from the mainland; most of these communities are served by a state or county road. Several commWlities reported that traffic congestion occurs on these roads, especially on the segments which connect the island and mainland. For example, i n the City of Cocoa Beach, Sta t e Road (SR) 520 provi des major access to the central beach area and intersects with SR AlA, which is another major road on the island. The most recent Traffic Circul ation element of the City of Cocoa Beach Comprehensive Plan reported that the segment of SR 520 which accesses the island and is adjacent to SR AlA functions at level of service (LOS) F. In addition, most of the access roads to these cities cross drawbridges that span Intracoas t al Waterways between the barrier island and the mainland. Congestion in these communities frequen t l y occurs because of a drawbridge opening. Few communities reported that tolls are applied to access roads to the island. Tecltnlca/ Memorandum No. 2 Page23



Cflarlofte Coun(Y Potential for 1'rnnsit Attempts by many cities surveyed to include transit in mitigating traffic congestion have had to be coordinated with the transit operator, MPO, and FDOT. The City of Cocoa Beach has been successfu l in using this process with Space Coast Area T ransit (SCAT) to provide exclus ive service on the island. Congestion in the City o f Cocoa Beach is gene rated by work trips from the mainland to large employment sites on the island. The bus route provides service to shopping centers, hotels, condominiums, public facilities, and recreational facilities. Although service is not provided to the beach, the rou te operates within walking distance of the beach Ridership o n the service bas been marginal and since the service was intended to provide mobility for permanent and seasonal residents, its impact on reducing t raffic congestion caused by work trips has been minimal. Currently, no public transportation service is operated in the Englewood Beach area. Government-Funded Service The survey revealed that many cities have made efforts to operate beach shuU!e service (or to contract for its operation) as a means to alleviate traffic congestion, rather than to rely solely on previously established transit service in their areas. Besides the service provided by Pinellas Suncoast Tr ansit Authority (PSTA) in the City of Clearwater Beach, a public/private entity operates the Jolley Trolley. The system uses a rubber -t ired trolley that provides fixed-route service from downtown Clearwater, around Clearwater Beach, and across the Clearwater Pass Bridge to Sand Key. Jolley Trolley reported 3 50 average daily passenger trips on the trolley at the time of the survey. In addition, the Jolley Trolley Company has recently expanded service and plans to i ncrease headways to five minutes during peak service periods. Four additional vehicles were recently purchased by PSTA from a $400,000 Federal Transit Administration (FT A) Section 3 grant. These vehicles will be leased to Jolley Trolley. The trolley is governed by the Jolley Trolley Executive Committee, and is partially subsidi7..ed by the City of Clearwater Beach. Another pub lic transportation service being provided is waterborne. The Cleanvater Ferry provides service from Coachman Park, adjacent to downtown Clearwater, to the Clearwater Harbor side o f Clearwater Beach. In the City of Fort Myers Beach, Lee County Transit (LeeTran) operates a free rubber-tired trolley service in Fort Myers Beach and Bonita Springs at the so u th end of the island. The trolley operates from park-and-ride lots on the mainland to recreational, retail, and business locations on the island. Connections with regular fixed route service are available at park and-ride lots on the mainland. The service is available to residents and visitors. Service is operated from approximately 7:00a.m. to 6:00p.m. LeeTran reports that the trolley has been successful in reducing traffic congestion on the island. LeeTran reports approximately Technical Memorandum No. 2 Page2S


Pottntlalfor Transit Charlo tte Count)' 3,500 daily passenger tr ips on the trolley during peak season, and 2 500 during off-peak season. Transit represe ntat ives have also stated tha t during the peak season the trolley standing room only. Signs marke t ing the service are located throughout the City of Fort Myers Beach. In the City of Hollywood, a trolley provides service between downtown Hollywood and the beach area. Service is free and to residents and vi. sitors. The trolley is operated by The City of Hollywood Community Redevelopment Agency Service is provided Monday from II :00 am. to 10:00 p.m., Friday 12:00 p.m to 11:00 p .m., and from I I :00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. the rema ining days of the week. The service opera tes on a 60-minute headway. The city reports 375 daily passenger trips on the trolley during peak season, and 175 passenger trips during the off-peak season. The Lake Worth Trolley, which is operated by the City of Lake Worth provides trolley service th rou ghout the city and to the beach area from the mainland. The service includes three trolleys. One connects the mainland and the beach area, while the remaining two trolleys are used exclusively for mainland service Service is operated Monday to Saturday, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m and operates on a 60-minute headway Limited service is provided on Sunday, and i ncludes a three-hour headway. The base fare is $1.00. Riders younger than I 8, seniors, and persons with disabilities can ride for $ .50. The service also connects with Palm Beach County Transit (CoTran) at locations on the mainland. The t rolley service is available to residents and visitors. The City of Lake Worth reports approximately 266 average daily passenger trips on the trolley In the City of Sanibel a privately operated trolley service is provided by The Sanibel Transit Company. This service operates along Periwinkle Way and provides service to stops along the beach, including shopping centers in the city, and to stops on the mainland. The service is operated Monday through Friday. The company reported average daily ridership between 25 to 50. The City of St. Petersburg Beach contracts with Bats Transit to operate fixed-route service on the island and to the mainland. Bats Transit uses minibuses and service is provided to stops along the beach and to major retail and tourist locations on the island. Additionally, the service connects with Treasure Is land Trans it and with PSTA service on the mainland. Residents and visitors use the service. Weekday and Saturday service is operated from approximately 7:00a.m. to 6:00p.m. Sunday service is provided from approximately 7:45 a.m to 6:00p.m. The regular fare for each one-way trip is $1.00. The reduced fare for senior citizens and people with disabilities is $0.75, and for youth is $0.50. Bats reports approximately 270 average daily passenger trips on the transit service. Treasure Island Transit operates service in the City of Treasure I slan d. It connects with Bats Transit in the City of St. Petersburg Beach to the south and with PSTA service on the mainland The service uses regular buses, and residents and visitors are permitted to use the serv i ce Service is operated daily from approximate l y 8:00a.m. to 5:00p.m. The regular fare for a one-way trip is $1.00 and discounted fares are offered to senior citizens, persons Page 26 Technical Memorandum No. 2


Charlotte County Potential for Transit with disabilities, and children. Treasur e Island Tra ns i t reports approximately 40 average daily passenger trips on the service. Privately Operated and Funded Service lo addition to the cities that contract or operate transit service to th. e beach, some cities reported having transit service to the beach provided by private operators. These services are provided by a local business and are not funded by public resources. Two examples of this type of transit sctvice are described below. In addition to the beach setvice operated by the Palm Beach County Transportation Authority (PalmTran) in the City of Boca Raton, the Royal Palm S h uttle operates between the Royal Palm shopping ce nter, hotels in Boca Raton, and the beach. The shuttle also makes stops along the beach in the City of Deerfield Beach. Setvice is operated by the owners of the shopping center and service is free to shoppers and hotel guests. 111e Wave Line, the City of Fort Lauderdale's subsidized trolley operates along the beach. The service is operated mainly for tourists and plans are being considered to extend service t o downtown Fort Lauderdale. The regular fare is $1.00. Service is provided Monday through Saturday from I 0:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., and Sunday from I 0:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. However, city officials and trolley operators concede that the Wave Line has not been as sucecssful'as planned, in that ridership is significantly low er than projected. Latest ridership figures show that there approximately I 00 average d aily passenger trips on the Wave Line Besides the Wave Line, two beach restaurants have started operating a free train-a replica of an old steamer-along the beach and Las Olas Boulevard f or their customers. Potential Service in Charlotte County The information in this section will be used to identifY and evaluate alternatives in Task VII. Beach access by residents and tourists in Charlotte County does not seem to be a major problem in comparison to other beach communities in F lo rida The geography of Charlotte County l ends itself to better traffic circulation witb the absence of extensive barrier island development. The barrier island development in Charlotte is mininlal with the larger transportation problem being getting people to Englewood from Soutb and Mid-County. How other communities with elongated barrier islands have addressed public transportation could apply to the U.S. 41 corridor in Charlotte County in the future. Teclrnlcal Memorandum No. 2 Page27


Potential for Transit Charll!tte County PAGE LEFT BLANK INTENTIONALLY Page18 Technical ,.femorandum No. 2


Charlotte County Potential fqr Transit Transportation Demand Management Options Charlotte County is served by the newest commuter assistance program office, the Suncoast Metropolitan and Rural Transportation Conunuter Assistance Program (SMARTCAP). A local and rural program, SMARTCAP serves Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, and DeSoto counties and has developed a series of transportation demand management (TOM) programs for employers and commuters. Unlike most commuter assistant program (CAP) offices in Florida SMAR T CAP has developed a geographic information system based ridematching program that can be used to graphically display useful information when working with local employers. Firms, both public and private, that are interested in developing TDM strategies can call on SMAR T CAP for technica l assistance in establishing programs. The following section discusses a variety of TDM strategies that could be implemented in Charlotte County. Although the list is not exhaustive of all TDM programs in the co untry, these strategies represent the basic elements from which specific programs can be tailored to meet local needs. Ridesharing Ridesharing involves the shared use of a vehicle by two or more people for the purpose of getting to or from work, school, or other locations. Ridesharing applications range from private automobiles and privately-owned and operated vans to publicly-owned and operated vans and buses The points of origin and final destinations of riders vary. Carpools T he most common form of ridesharing is the use of a private vehicle by two or more passengers, generally for transportation to and from work. The passengers may use one vehicle and share expenses, o r may rotate vehicles with no additional costs to passengers From 1990 Census data, the average travel time to work in Charlotte County was slightly more than 18 minutes. Commute times in this range are conducive to carpool mode choice by those considering a commute alternative. Thus carpool programs in Charlotte County would be a viable option. For a Charlotte County transit agency, the role would be one of marketing and promotion, Technical Memorandum No. 2 Page29


Potential for Transit Charlotte Count}' smce matching services are cutTently offered by SMARTCAP. This marketing could be complementary to a strong transit marketing program, with an emphas i s on a mobility management theme. Vanpools Six or mo re passengers who share a ride in a pre-manged group are considered a vanpool. In most cases, one or more of the pool members are regular drivers who pick up others at specific points drop them off at common sites and return them to pickup points at the end of the day. Van pools are sometimes used to provide reverse commute transportation from inner-city residential areas to suburban job sites. The costs of the vanpool including all operating, maintenance, and insurance costs, are generally divided equally by the riders. According to the 1990 Census, about 22 percent of Charlotte County commuters have travel times conducive to vanpool formation (usually 30 minutes or lo nger). This is related to delays caused by multiple stops to pick up passe n gers. Commuters who normally face 30-minute commutes are less affected by S minutes in delay to pick up other passengers than commuters whose normal commute is only S minutes. Given the number of commuters falling into this category, a modest vanpool program has potential applicability in Charlotte County. With federal operati ng assistance being reduced, more and more transit agencies are examining vanpools. Any Charlotte County transit agency should strongly consider vanpools as well. Brevard County for example provides capital assistance for vanpool purchase and passes that cost savings on to vanpool participants. Not only do vanpoolers receive reduced fares, the transit agency can then include the vanpool passenger mileage in its reporting requ irem ents. This translates to increased funds for operating purposes. Because most vanpools are self-funding (all operating costs paid for by participants), the additional funds can be used to subs idize other transit services. Guaranteed Ride Home Program s A guaranteed ride home program reduces the anxiety of rideshari ng by guaranteeing employees, in case of an emergency, a convenient and reliable mode of trans portat ion to their home or to the site of the emergency. The most common transportation options for guaranteed ride borne programs are taxi service, short-term auto rental, fleet vehicle, shuttle services and public transit. Page30 Technical Menwrandum No. 2


Cltorlotte Coullfy Pountialjor Tratuif : :r 'i :. : Recent studies have shown that as many as 80 percent of new carpool participants agreed to participat e because of the existence of a guaranteed ride home program. Given that only about I 0 percent ofreg istered users ever need to use the program (and for most of those, the program is rarely used more than twice in any given year) a guaranteed ride home program is a low cost complementary program that should be considered if Charlotte County elects to implement a rideshare program. A Charlotte County transit agency could be the local sponsor of a guaranteed ride home program. Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HARTline) in Tampa sponsors a guaranteed ride home program for commuters who use transit carpoo l s or vanpools at least two days a week to get to work. Any program s hould include transit commuters as well as carpool and vanpool commuters. According to the citizen telephone survey conducted in Charlotte County 5 percent of respondents carpool or vanpool while traveling locally. However, travel for work trips is a lower percentage of total trips in comparison to other counties. Therefore, ridesharing could have a moderate but not a major impact in Charlotte County. Alternative Work Hours Alternative work hours refers to any variation in the typical 8-to-5, Monday-through-Friday, work schedu l e Flexible work hours allow employees t o adjust work schedules to accommodate transit and ridesharing arrangements. The three most common types of alternative work schedules are staggered work hours, flextime, and the compressed work weeks. Most employers interested in alternative work hour programs have access to t e chnical assistance for start-up from SMARTCAP. A transit agency should be able to refer interested employers to SMARTCAP, and may cons ider promoting such programs if it helps commuters increase the ir commute options. Staggered Work Hours In this alternative work schedule, the employer staggers the arrival and departure time of groups of employees to disperse the overall impact of their travel. These schedules usually are designed so groups of employees arrive and depart from work at anywhere from 15-minute to two-hour intervals. The three rnost common types of work hour adjustments are: Tecltnit!al Memorandum No. 2 Page31


Potentlalfor Tran.tit Cllarlotte County Departmental: Employers assign different starting times for individual departments or units Individual: Employers assign start ing times to individual employees. Modal : Starting and ending times are determined according to transportation arrangements. This is generally used in conjunction with other TDM measures, such as ridesharing, transit and so on. Flextime In this arrangement, employees select their arrival and departure times and the length of their lunch period. They work eight hours each day and have specified hours in which they are in the office. Most flextime schedules include a core period during the work day when all employees are present. Four common flextime schedules are: Gliding Schedule: Employees' start time determines their ending time. The start of the morning period may range from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a m. The work day ends as employees complete their usual number of work hours. Modified Gliding: U nder this schedule, an employer selects hours during which coverage must be maintained. Flexilour: The employees select a starting time, for example between 6:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. Their starting time remains unt il the option to change is extended Maxiflex: Employees earn hours by working any number of hours within a 24-hour period T he hours are "banked" and then used to shorten future work days or work weeks. Compressed Work Week This approach allows employees to complete the typica140-hour work week i n less than the normal five days. Common variations include a four-day work week, or working 80 hours in nine days and taking the tenth day off. There are three way s in which work schedules are normally compressed: 4/40 Schedule: Employees work a 40-hour week in four 10-bour days. 9180 Schedule: Employees work 80 hours in nine days. 5/4/9 Schedule: Employees work more than eight hours on four days of the week and work a shortened schedule on the fifth day While this practice may reduce peak-hour traffic, it has little or no impact on energy conservation or air quality improVement efforts. Page 31 TtchniCJzl MemoTandum No. 2


CflarWtte Cou11ty Potentia/ for Transit . . . .. Because most alternative work hour programs are employer-based strategies it is difficult to predict applicability in Charlotte County with its low volume ofwork-relatcd trips. Also, because Charlotte Co1Uity's documented peak-hour traffic is between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00p.m ; shifting work trips from traditional commuting patterns into these time periods would likely increase traffic congestion during Charlotte County's peak travel periods. Telecommuting Telecommuting refers to the option of an employee working at home or at an office close to home on a fullor part-time basis. Although computers and other technology facilitate telecommuting, the telephone is still the most basic tool for working at an alternate location. A variety of telecommuting arrangements may be pursued as an alternative to working \\1thin the head office. These include the following: Work a1 Home: This option is the most common and least expensive form of telecommuting, and it is a very popular option among employees. Satellite Center: This option involves the establishment of a satellite office within closer proximity to a group of employees than the main office. These telecommuters may then work at the satellite office, thereby substantially reducing their commute time. Satellite work centers differ from branch offices, which are aimed at establishing a presence in a certain area rather than reducing commute times. Neighborhood Center: In this arrangement, telecommuters with different employers work at a neighborhood work center and share resources, such as clerical help, communications equipment, photocopying and office supplies. Although more difficult and costly to set up, neighborhood work centers are easier to sell in concept to management, perhaps because they more closely resemble the traditional office. Increases in job portability have led to an increased interest in telecommuting programs. Given the rural nature of Charlotte Co1Uity, employer-sponsored telecommuting programs may become more popular in the county. Because of the availability of technical assistance from SMARTCAP there is little reason for a local transit agency to consider telecommuting assistance programs as part of its service configuration. Technical Memorandum No. 2 Page33


Potential for TratJSit Charlotte County Parking Management Parking management is a set of strategies used to balance the supply and demand for parking In any parking management program, it is important to recognize that a commuter's decision to drive alone carpool vanpool, or use mass transit is strongly influenced by the cost, avai l ability and convenience of parking. Employers have three common parking management strategies they can use to influence transportation demand: parking pricing, preferential parking, and employee transportation allowances. Parking Pr icing : Parking pricing applies cost and subsidies as tools to change the way a commuter chooses to travel tO the work site. Emplo yers might increase the parking charges for drive-alone commuters or reduce parking charges for carpoolers and vanpoolers. Fees collected t hen can be used to offset the cost of the company's TDM program. Preferential Parking: Employers and developers can reserve the most desirable parking spaces for ridesharing vehicles as an incentive for participation i n a ridesharing program. Transportation Allowances: Employers can provide financial assistance to employees for their round-trip commute to and from the work site. This i nvo lves employer distribution of a pre-determined dollar amount tO subsidize all or part of the employee's commuting costs. Availability of parking throughout Charlotte County precludes most parking management strategies. The price of parking, which is mostly free or hidden in lease arrangements, also limits the applicability If the transit agency actively supports ridesharing programs, or develops a vanpool program then preferential parking programs should be marketed and promoted. Transit agency staff should be able to assist local employers in establishing such programs by providing guidance on space selection, signage and other requirements. Nonetheless, the draft Charlotte County Comprehensive Plan includes a policy of allowing new development to limit parking if transit, pedestrian, or bicycle infrastructure is provided. This provision could incre a se the effectiveness of parking management strategies in Charlotte County. HOVLanes High occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes are specially dedicated lanes on highways and other commuting corridors that are reserved for vehicles carrying more than one person. Dedicating traffic PageH Technical Memorandum No. 2


Charlotte County Potential for Transit lanes for vehicles carrying two or more people expands roadway capac ity and reduces travel time. There are four basic types of HOV lanes currently i n operation: Separated Lanes: These lanes are physically separated from other travel lanes usually by concrete barriers, median strips, or guard rails, and can be developed within existing roadway rights-of-way. Generally, these Janes are inbound lanes in the morning and outbound lanes in the afternoon, with accompanying signs and barriers identifying the direction of flow. Concurrent Flow Lanes: These are lanes adjacent to exist ing travel lanes and are not separated from the general traffic lanes by a physical barrier. HOV lanes are closest to the median and are separared from the general purpose travel lanes by a solid white line. Contrajlow Lanes : Traffic on these lanes travels opposite the directional flow of the highway. These lanes arc separated from other lanes by cones or other easily-removabl e barriers. Generally, these lane s are closest to the median and operate only during peak periods. Exclusive Roadways: Only HOV vehicles can use exclusive HOV roadways, which require their own rights-of-way. Because of the high costs involved, exclusive HOV roadways are usually developed by loca l transit authorities for the exclusive use of buses. Given the relatively low levels of traffic congestion on the majority of county roadways, HOV lanes have only limited applicability i n Charlotte County. Although U.S. 4 1 travelers can face traffic delays the congestion is not significant enough to warrant the large capital expenditures to construct HOV lanes. The 2020 I-75 Multi-Modal Master Plan indicates that HOV lanes will be required on I-75fromU.S.l7toKingsHighway. Pedestrian and Bicycle Alternatives Non-motorized transportation, such as walking and bicycling, has the added advantage of replacing some automobile trips altogether. Walking and bicycling are especially effective travel modes for trips of less than five miles. The success of bicycle and pedestrian transportation depends upon coordination of land development with transportation planning Bicycle and pedestrian amenities may include ncar-side pedestrian or "tlicycle access to frequented stores and serv ices such as banks or convenience stores, sidewalks, sec11re bicycle parking, showers and lockers at the work place, and convenient access. Most communities in Florida suffer from inadequate bicycle and pedestrian linkages between residential and non-residential areas. Improved bicycle and pedestrian access and programs are Technical Memorandum No. 2 Page35


P()Untlalfor Tran.tit Char/()/le County need ed in all conununities including Charlotte County. In fact, bicycle and pedestrian facilities were ranked as more important i mprovements than building or expanding roads in the Charlotte County citizen telephone survey. A transit agency could play a role in developing bicycle and pedestrian programs since many of ihese programs also improve transit access. In addition, a transit agency should consider a bikes-on-bus program to improve in termodal connectivity within Charlotte County. Finally, a transit agency representative should be involved in the land planning review process to ensure ihat transit, bicycle and pedestrian access is accommodated in new development. Given ihe high ranking of bicycles and pedestrians in the citizen survey, ihese facilities have cit izen interest and applicability in Charlotte County. Transportation Management Organizations Transporta tion Management Organizations (TMOs), also known as Transportation Management Associat ions (TMAs), have emerged as a new approach to addressing transportation needs. TMOs are grass-roots organizations formed to address mobility needs in major activity centers They provide a forum ihrough which building owners, merchants developers, policy makers, and public sector agencies can act collectively to establish programs, policies, and services that resolve local and regional transportation problems. However, given ihe dispersed employment patterns, and lack of well-defined, large employment activity centers, ihere is little n eed for a TMO i n Charlotte County. Trip Reduction Ordinances A trip reduction ordinance (TRO) is a regulatory tool for mandating participation in TDM. Generally, a TRO requires certain organizations, such as major employers or developers, to plan and carry out measures aimed at reducing the number of single occupant vehicle trips generated to and from a given location Given ihe relative lack of traffic congestion and ihe existence of development regulations already in place, ihere is little need for a trip reduction o rdinanc e in Charlotte County. Page36 Technical Memorandum No. 1


Chnrlolfe County Potential for Trn11sit . . . . . Summary Technical Memorandum No. I analyzed existing conditions and described the public involvement effort related to development of the Charlotte County Transi t Development Plan (TOP). This technical memorandum has addressed issues related to the potential for transit service in Charlotte County Technical Memorandum No. 3 will document goals and objectives for providing public transportat ion in Charlotte County. Technical Memorandum No.4 builds on the earlier tec hnical memoranda to provide an analysis of existing public transportation service and estimates of future demand and need for expanded service. Technical Memorandum No. 5 will describe the options for public transportation in Charlotte County The fmal document will comprise the T ransit Development Plan. The major findings of this document incl ude the following: Based on the information presented in Tech Memo No. 2, the threshold for transit analysis suggests that Charlotte County might be able to sustain some type of minimal fixed-route bus service; however, until the full analysis is completed, it would be premature to make a decision at this po int. The peer analysis of CTCs and fixed-rou te services suggests that some type of enhanced paratransit (door-to-door service) available to the general public or minimal fiXed-route service targeting areas that are most conducive to transit might be options for Charlotte County. The Beach Shuttle study described in this report indicates that beach traffic is not a major problem for Charlotte County and there is little evidence to suggest that there is a need for public transportation to re lieve congestion. Finally the description of transportation demand management strategies suggests that improvements in pedestrian and bicycle facilities may have tbe potential for positiv e imp act in Charlotte County during the next five years Improvements in pedestrian and bicycle access will make it easier and safer to travel throughout the County. However because of low employment densities, it is uttlikely that other TOM strategies will offer much assistance to the residents of Charlotte County in the near future. Technical Memorandum No. Z Page37


Potentia/for Tran..tit Charlolte Counry PAGE LEFf BLANK INTENTIONALLY Page38 Technical MemoTanlhlm No. 2


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