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Tribulations of Transit

Published: March 25, 2015
Josh Jaquish is a technology and business consulting executive with nearly 20 years of experience. Read More

In urban areas of all sizes, public transit is an imperative service. Reasons why city dwellers choose to ride the bus or take a train vary from lack of a driver's license to sheer convenience. Regardless of the driving force, public transit is a necessary utility in the city sphere. There are so many parts of the industry as a whole, it can be difficult for general managers and transit directors to deal with. And in this ever-growing business, it's important that all branches of public transportation are maintained and kept running at top-performance quality.

Ridership Up

Either due to environmental mindfulness or budget constraints, US transit ridership went up in 2014, reported the American Public Transportation Association. In large cities across the country, more people chose to utilize buses, trains, trolleys, etc. for their commuting and travel purposes than they had in the past 58 years. It's especially interesting to note that gas prices fell as low as less than $1.99 per gallon in some places, the lowest prices the United States has seen in years.

While the country as a whole did see growth in public transit usage, certain cities saw fewer rides taken due to poor maintenance and debilitating structures. In locations such as Detroit, decreasing public transit and extremely harsh economic conditions make for a tough combination to get the system back on track.

Transit in Trouble

Detroit isn't the only place to experience travel woes. Other communities that have a suffering public transit system are suburban areas that don't have enough riders to cover capital and operating costs, according to Dr. Jean-Paul Roderigue, Professor in the department of Global Studies and Geography at Hofstra University. Dr. Roderigue also noted that when trains and trolleys are overused at peak hours, the stress on the infrastructure as the system tries to cope with the demand could be detrimental to the service as a whole.

Other issues lie outside of the control of transit management but still wreak havoc on the organizations. Weather and public events affect transportation, often negatively, and it leaves much to be desired by way of effectiveness of the service. Natural wear and tear from use is one thing, but natural disasters are quite another.

Public transit needs constant maintenance - there is always some project to be done with people and materials that need organizing. Implementing anERP software suite that can manage and streamline processes to ensure that projects go as smoothly as possible is entirely necessary for cities and regions that wish to remain& at the forefront of public importance.

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