Public Transit Has a Serious Image Term Paper

Pages: 8 (3083 words)  ·  Style: MLA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 8  ·  Level: College Sophomore  ·  Topic: Transportation

Public transit has a serious image, what can be done to improve this and attract choice riders a) Extent to which transit suffers from a negative image:

With the constant upsurge in population, roads and highways become more overcrowded, and national resources become more valuable, it will come to be more and more important to realize the overall economic and environment delivering power of transit so as to sustain an increased level of transportation and livability among people. To derive full potential, public support for and application of transit are important. However, transit in U.S. suffers from an image problem and until the general perception of the public of transit is enhanced, the needed public support for and availing the benefits of transit remain in doubt. In answer to this trepidation, transit organization at the national, regional, and local levels are thinking about a crusade to improve the image of transit. It is an interesting find that public transportation suffers from the abysmal levels of concern people have for issues related to transportation. People favor those matters which they feel deliver solution to their problems which bother them the most. Apart from that another interesting find is that regardless of two-thirds of the public having used public transportation once at the minimum, merely half recognizes it. (the Federal Transit Administration, 4)

The following factors are responsible for the extent to which transit suffers from a negative image: (i) public concerns for safeguarding the environment and bettering quality of air shape perceptions and support for public transportation. As a result, the fact that issues regarding environment are do not figure high on the typical citizen's list of most vital national problems indicates that public transportation as an answer for cleaner air, is not so much sought after. Merely in excess of one-tenth i.e. 14% of all articles regarding public transportation speak about air quality. (ii) Traffic overcrowding is supposed to be a mounting problem. Almost 45% of Americans consider that the quantum of traffic appear to be a serious problem in their areas of residence. About more than half of about 57% do not perceive their quality of journey will improve in the forthcoming three years, and roughly a quarter 24% perceive they will devote greater time in traveling. (iii) Evidently, bulk of the public transportation users i.e. blacks, urban dwellers and non-whites, Hispanics and also the people earning $20,000 to $30,000 show the maximum concern regarding problems concerning public transportation. (iv) Even though in excess of 75% of all Americans have knowledge that public transportation is present in their local community or region and almost two thirds i.e. 64% have availed public transportation once during their lifetime at the minimum, just a little more than half i.e. 55% state that they are familiar with the transit in their locality. (the Federal Transit Administration, 22)

The primary causes for public transit not finding favor among people are (i) time taking feature which accounted for 20% of all dislikes stated (ii) deficiency of availability or access which is 18%, (iii) untimely schedules responsible for 16% and (iv) overcrowding (16%). Besides there are a lot of derived causes that cover rash drivers / passengers which is 8%, safety concerns covering 8%, costly with is responsible for 8% and nasty buses responsible for 7%. Seemingly, public perception of the transit industry is fundamentally shaped by their attitudes regarding functional characteristics of public transportation services. (the Federal Transit Administration, 25) b) Why this is the case:

It is seen that Americans' tilt towards driving cars is more than availing public transit. The price, pace and power of cars render them images of social rank, and auto marketers have been quick to take advantage of this, deliberately manufacturing some care as luxurious and others as costly. Consumers dish out more for cars to improve their position in the likely social pecking order. It is important to note that the national highway system is neither cheap nor safe. It was at no point of time crucial to national defense, as the builders had asserted, and it has cost which is more per person compared to mass transit would have. Auto companies deliberately purchased and severed public systems. Interstate highways damaged neighborhoods and city parks and have still not helped in reducing peak-hour jamming because of rising number of vehicles. The rising auto culture has created a costly citadel of transportation that contains obsessive desires building an emotional dependence, an apparent essentiality an addiction which triggers American to purchase more than a million cars every month. (Bailey, 89)

What is the reason why industrial cultures are so enthusiastic about cars which they deny to see the justifiable requirement to lower the usage of cars and enhance mass transit? They declare that their attraction to cars is out of a love affair, a fervent dependence on the carefree, symbolic power, sexiness and social position which cars have. On the top of it, the speed of automobiles also has encouraged social isolation. Some people like the isolation of driving solo, finding the car, in a life of high speed, to be their only time alone in the tranquility of the chamber of isolation. Remaining secluded in the glass in techno-cocoons, why worry to pay attention regarding the external problems. The car facilitates the creation of the suburbs by creating the commuting which permits building on the periphery of the city limits. This enables in additional seclusion because of driving an automobile. (Bailey, 89)

Interest among the public for public transportation diminishes relative to other important public concerns such as education, crime, and air and water pollution. Apart from that, as regards favorability, public transportation occupies the lower middle level of industries. The main reasons why public transit suffers from a negative image are (i) riding buses and trains take a heavy toll on stress and it is less relaxing compared to driving. (ii) public transit especially buses are devoid of status. Public transportation is regarded to be beneficial for persons with disabilities, the old ages, unemployed, students and people not owning a car. This happens to be the strongest reason why people are unable to envision themselves to be seated inside a bus. (ii) There does not appear to be any role for public transportation in regions where there is little traffic congestion. Besides, Americans love to drive a car very much is manifested in successive surveys. (iii) the most important point responsible for low image is the perception regarding public transportation that are shaped by Americans' approach towards the automobile which is a common feature of all American families. Almost 92% of every adult Americans drive a vehicle, and 80% perceive that their vehicles are a matter of necessity rather than a luxury. It is important to note that automobile is an essential and adored constituent of American families. Rendering that endeavor more difficult for transit industry is its capability to efficiently market its product against the automotive industry. During 2006, the automotive industry made an investment of $133.5 billion on advertising which is $5 billion higher compared to the whole 2006 budget of the Federal Transit Administration. (Remington, 65)

Assessment of how image varies across the different transit modes:

Several studies attempted to address the manner in which image varies across the various transit modes. A study by the INTERPLAN zeroed on six general attribute categories compared to preference of mobility choice decisions. These are accessibility, efficiency, reliability, journey comfort, safety and expenditure. A broad study conducted by the Orange County Transit District in California looked at the identification and evaluation of the comparative importance of the attributes of transit as envisaged by the consumer and the finding of the extent to which consumers believe that the present fulfill their urgencies. The outcomes were in general agreement with the previous studies, however pointed that the public accorded greater value on the attitude of the bus driver than identified earlier. Close general support for the transit was revealed; with 84% reacting that the advantages of transit commensurate with the cost and 90% had a feeling that travel by bus would convert their city to be more livable. The maximum support in favor of transit was revealed in the demographic groups who possibly will use transit the minimum, and those having incomes of more than $25,000 annually or with two or more autos. (Byrd, 620)

The study lends a sound example regarding the manner in which outcomes can be applied for policy guidance and decision concerning management. For instance, explanation of the study results pointed out that in this nation more endeavor was required to market the image of transit which an interested but on the whole uninformed public was found out. Apart from that the Centre for Urban Transportation Research at the University of South Florida in an inclusive report dealt with the consumer preferences of automobile users as also transit users in 17 metropolitan regions throughout the nation those who have already possess instant to public transportation. The… [END OF PREVIEW]

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