, Volume 39, Issue 6, pp 1209–1221 | Cite as

Ridership drivers of bus rapid transit systems

  • David A. Hensher
  • Zheng Li


We have collected information on 46 bus rapid transit (BRT) systems throughout the world to investigate the potential patronage drivers. From a large number of candidate explanatory variables (quantitative and qualitative), 11 sources of systematic variation are identified which have a statistically significant impact on daily passenger-trip numbers. These sources are fare, headway, the length of the BRT network, the number of corridors, average distance between stations; whether there is: an integrated network of routes and corridors, modal integration at BRT stations, pre-board fare collection and fare verification, quality control oversight from an independent agency, at-level boarding and alighting, as well as the location of BRT. The findings of this paper offer important insights into features of BRT systems that are positive contributors to growing patronage and hence should be taken into account in designing and planning BRT systems.


Bus rapid transit Daily passenger-trips Patronage drivers Systematic variation 



This study is undertaken as part of the research program LS1 of the Volvo Research and Education Foundation Bus Rapid Transit Centre of Excellence. We thank Corinne Mulley for her comments and three referees for some very insightful comments that have contributed materially to improving this paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Transport and Logistics StudiesThe University of Sydney Business School, The University of SydneySydneyAustralia

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