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OSSTIP/WPPTUA1- Developing a timetable for a higher-frequency and expanded SmartBus network

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Revision as of 01:26, 11 March 2015 by PatSunter (talk | Contributions) (→‎Results: - added summary of initial GTFS extraction work.)
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WP Essentials

This is a Work Package as part of the OSSTIP project.

Inputs: PTUA's specification of which bus routes to improve, and what frequency to use. Working OSSTIP tools to allow sub-setting an existing GTFS network, and modifying the frequency of certain routes, to then create a new GTFS file (See OSSTIP/WP6.

Outputs: Created GTFS file of SmartBus routes with increased frequency. Modified original buses GTFS file, with the specified SmartBus routes removed.

Estimated Time: Small-Medium

Requirements Summary

As part of the PTUA Action-Case work in building OSSTIP, improving the smartbus network frequency was one of the negotiated targets to analyse and communicate as part of their network reform policy proposal.

Specifically, the bus networks to increase to 10-min or lower headway, during 6am-midnight, 7-days-a-week, are:

  • existing smartbus routes: 703, 900, 901, 902, 903, 905, 906, 907, 908
    • Note:- see below that in Feb 2015 we also decided to split the very long Smartbus routes 901, 902, 903 into subsets, similar to Transdev's announced plans for the routes.
  • A secondary list of routes of interest:
    • 223, 246, 250, 402, 410, 472, 600, 630, 828, 216, 219, 220, 552, 732.
    • Note:- after a workshop in November 2014 showing the geometry of the updated routes in QGIS, at the PTUA's request we added some extra bus routes to the upgrade list, so it became routes:
    • 216, 219, 220, 223, 232, 235, 246, 250, 270, 400, 402, 410, 411, 418, 420, 446, 447, 472, 494, 504, 508, 513, 552, 556, 561, 562, 600, 623, 630, 679, 693, 732, 733, 734, 737, 767, 781, 788, 791, 800, 822, 823, 824, 828, 841, 862


Initial work:- sub-setting initial GTFS bus network file into sections to upgrade

Much work was put into the OSSTIP/SimpleGTFSCreator package in late 2014 for extracting the 'abstract network topology and service' levels from an existing GTFS timetable, in order to support modification.

To simplify the task, I first added some GTFS sub-setting tools by Geometric region to reduce the number of relevant routes to process. By applying this using a polygon around "metro Melbourne", the area of interest for our network upgrades package, it reduced the number of bus routes in the GTFS from 681 (for all of Victoria) to 362.

The subsetting script in SimpleGTFSCreator is called, and the resulting GTFS file in the OSSTIP_Common_LargeFile_Archives Dropbox is in the subpath:- GTFS/GTFS-ExtractedData-201406/

I then wanted to extract just the bus routes specified for upgrading, to separate GTFS files, and then create a further GTFS file for the bus routes we weren't going to upgrade. The strategy here is that the smaller GTFS files of bus routes to upgrade could then be modified, while the remaining routes could be used as-is in calculations. This is because OpenTripPlanner has the nice feature of being able to combine an arbitrary number of GTFS files into a single 'graph' for routing analysis (as long as each GTFS file has separate trip, route etc IDs).

So with further use of the SimpleGTFSCreator script, I created these new GTFS files as follows:-

  • OSSTIP_Common_LargeFile_Archives/GTFS/GTFS-ExtractedData-201406/melb-bus-gtfs-2014_06-subsets/ (9 routes)
  • OSSTIP_Common_LargeFile_Archives/GTFS/GTFS-ExtractedData-201406/melb-bus-gtfs-2014_06-subsets/ (14 routes)
  • OSSTIP_Common_LargeFile_Archives/GTFS/GTFS-ExtractedData-201406/melb-bus-gtfs-2014_06-subsets/ (339 routes)

So the next stage was to extract the generalised network topology and service levels from the first of these two files, so we could modify them and create new upgraded versions.

Extraction process of generalised network topology and service levels

Discuss issues here :- deciding where routes started, looping, etc.

Revising for expanded route list

(Notes here).

Workflow for creating upgraded frequency of routes and producing a new GTFS file

Issue with very long smartbus routes, and splitting of routes as a result

Issues with speed-extraction of buses from timetables

Outputs summary

(Where output GTFS files are). (Include an estimate of bus numbers in peak hour before and after the upgrades ...)