L. Perera, N. Jayasooriya, G. Rajapaksha
A light rail transit system (LRT) has been proposed for the city of Colombo as a solution to traffic congestion and the first LRT line is under design stage. This proposed LRT is expecting a major mode shift from private vehicle users to LRT and thus integration of private to public mode (mainly cars to LRT) is essential for LRT to sustain. To reinforce this integration, a Park and Ride (P&R) system is proposed, which is a commonly used and well-accepted strategy in most cities around the world. However, application of this P&R concept was failed in Colombo, Sri Lanka in the past when implemented to promote bus transit due to various reasons. Therefore, there is a big question mark whether a park and ride facility would help to attract more private vehicle users to LRT in Colombo. This study is focused on assessing the effect of a park and ride facility in conjunction with the new Light Rail transportation, especially what parameters are predominant to attract more users. A Discrete Choice Experiment was used to evaluate potential users’ choice. This experiment has revealed that potential users are more concerned about travel time savings and walking distance, while parking availability is also a significant factor with less probability. Travel cost savings and LRT frequency found to be trivial. To attract more users for a P&R among those who make short trips, walking distance to the parking facility is a crucial parameter to consider in the planning stage. The results of this study shed the light on key parameters that need to be considered when planning park and ride facilities as a supporting infrastructure to enhance the demand for new LRT lines.
Keywords: park and ride; LRT; discrete choice; public transport; modal shift