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Multiple criteria evaluation of the mass transit systems in european cities

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The paper presents the methodology of evaluating diversified mass transit systems (MTS-s), operating in different European cities. The evaluation of MTS-s is formulated as a multiple criteria ranking problem and the methodology of Multiple Criteria Decision Making / Aiding (MCDM/A) is applied to solve it. The authors carry out and present all phases of the solution procedure of the multiple criteria decision problem (DP). Thus, they define the variants and the consistent family of criteria. They model the decision makers’ (DMs’) preferences, including their sensitivity and perception of the importance of criteria. They review and analyze a spectrum of MCDM/A ranking methods, including: Electre III, Oreste, AHP, UTA, and finally select the most appropriate ones that fit best the specific character of the public transportation systems’ evaluation process. They run computational experiments resulting in the generation of the final rankings of the MTS-s.
1. INTRODUCTION
Public urban transportation system, often called mass transit system (MTS) is a set of organized components that carries out passenger transportation services within the urbanized areas [5], [34]. Usually MTS is operated by a common carrier and configured to provide scheduled service on fixed routes for passengers travelling within a local metropolitan area between their origins and destinations (e.g.: homes, places of employment, shopping centres, schools and others) [14]. Public transportation offers many advantages over individual ways of moving by private transportation means, including: lower transportation costs, lower utilization of space per person travelled, lower energy consumption and lower pollution.
Public transportation increases overall mobility of the local community, especially of its part that does not posses private cars. It also improves accessibility to different destinations, including: places of employment, business activities centers, points of interests and/or recreational areas. For these reasons municipal authorities in many cities (especially in
Europe) are vividly interested in providing satisfactory level of public transportation services, resulting in the overall increase of the urban life standard.
The situation of MTS-s and the tendency of using them are different at various continents. In
North America, in particular in the USA, where people are strongly attached to their private cars, public urban transportation plays marginal role [18]. (...)

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