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Bus rapid transit (BRT) and transitoriented development (TOD): How to transform and adjust the Swedish cities for attractive bus systems like BRT? What demands BRT?
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Transport Science, Traffic and Logistics.
2013 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Bus rapid transit (BRT) is an innovative bus system with sophisticated vehicles and inflexible busways integrated in the cities, high capacity and high quality, high speed and frequency, distinctive image and comfort. Many in Sweden believe that is impossible to introduce BRT, even though the Swedish towns and cities can benefit from the image, speed and frequency that BRT symbolizes. The archipelago-like urbanization, urban sprawl and the uncompetitive journey times of public transportation compared with the private car are identified as main obstacles. New questions emerged: Is it possible to transform and adjust the Swedish towns and cities for BRT? What demands BRT? How is transit-oriented development (TOD) applicable in a Swedish context as a policy to integrate cities and BRT?

In this licentiate thesis I investigate the interrelationship between bus transportation and neighborhoods, between BRT and urban form as well as the possibilities to introduce busways and BRT, to trigger TOD and to transform the Swedish towns and cities for BRT. Much has been written about BRT, but seldom by architects or urban planners and designers. BRT and TOD are seen though urban form and processes of urbanization within a morphological tradition established by Kevin Lynch. BRT is represented by paths and nodes that disperse distinctive attractiveness pattern of desirability cores that shape neighborhoods as districts. TOD is about synchronizing the everyday urban life with public transportation systems. BRT-TOD is defined as a policy to recognize desirability cores spread by the different infrastructures of BRT and promote development of urban form within their attractiveness pattern at urban and regional scale. BRT-TOD is discussed as a concept of BRT metropolis in context of the urbanization of Swedish towns and cities.

 TOD is defined morphologically as public transport cities. A public transport city is a city that in its development adapted to specific public transportation systems. TOD is nothing new in Europe or Sweden. To find regularities of the effect of public transportation systems on cities I do a historical overview of the Swedish towns and cities. In the end the position of bus and BRT, public transport cities and TOD and possibilities of future urban transformation of the smaller and larger Swedish cities towards BRT metropolises are discussed in context of today’s “‘system’ of automobility” and widespread car society and the emerging knowledge society and its postmodern fringes of urbanization.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2013. , xvi, 89 p.
Series
TRITA-TEC-LIC, ISSN 1653-445X ; 13:007
Keyword [en]
bus rapid transit (BRT), transit-oriented development (TOD), bus transportation, neighborhood, urban form, urban morphology, urbanization
National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics
Research subject
Transport Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-128526ISBN: 978-91-87353-16-1 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-128526DiVA: diva2:648555
Presentation
2013-09-11, L1, Drottning Kristinas väg 30, KTH, Stockholm, 13:30 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
VINNOVA, 2009-01233
Note

QC 20130917

Available from: 2013-09-17 Created: 2013-09-12 Last updated: 2017-08-10Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. The revival of buses as Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in urban and regional planning: retrospect and prospects
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The revival of buses as Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in urban and regional planning: retrospect and prospects
2013 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In contrast to the conventional bus systems that operate predominantly on streets, in mixed traffic or on dedicated lanes, bus rapid transit (BRT) achieves high capacity by channeling passenger flows in a system of segregated busways, partially or fully separated from other traffic. We are in the midst of an emergence of a new multimodality paradigm in urban and region planning and within the new paradigm there is priority on environmental friendly and more energy effective transports like public transport, cycling and walking in multimodal systems. European commission (EC) advocates for balance between transport modes and more sustainable transports. In the emerging planning paradigm there is much advocacy for BRT and its integration in cities through the ‘compact city’ model.

In this article I trace buses and BRT in the history of urban and regional planning and urban planning and design and I look at European cases of ‘compact city’ neighborhoods developed along busways. The motorbus with the emergence of the car was preferred and widespread alternative to the 19th century tramways and railways. But in the same time the bus was profoundly patronized. It was more an excuse for urban planners and designers not to plan public transport than a mobility solution. The flexible bus like the car could reach anywhere. What is the perception and position of bus and BRT today? Did BRT made a change in urban and regional planning? What is happening on the historical, today abandoned industrial urban fringe of the cities in Northern Europe? How is BRT included? How BRT can help? Today we see a wide replication of the ‘compact city’ urban model in the abandoned industrial zones in Europe and BRT is in the heart of many ‘compact city’ neighborhoods. The urban model includes partially separated or light busways integrated in multimodal streets alongside sidewalks, bicycle and car lanes. BRT is conceived as a future public transport system, a sophisticated high speed system integrated in cities. BRT has inflexible busways and it is driver for urban new developments. There are many finished and ongoing busway projects in Europe. But there are too few debates and too little reflections on the replication of the ‘compact city’ model. The partially separated busways integrated with cities do not allow high speeds. Thus they cannot compete with the private car on regional scale because they are slower (20-25km/h) than the typical regional public transport systems. Secondly, the ‘sophisticated vehicles’ are often the plain old buses that run on busways. They are as austere and uncomfortable as the other buses in every city. There are some new concept buses, but they are still prototypes. The emergence of the stereotypical compact city neighborhoods opens new questions: How attractive is to live in there? Should we replicate more ‘compact city’ neighborhoods like in Gothenbourg, Eindhoven, Douai, Paris and Cambridge? How creatively BRT is used and how creatively can it be used?

Publisher
28 p.
Keyword
bus, Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), urban and regional planning, retrospect, prospects, history future
National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-116014 (URN)
Conference
European Transport Conference 2013; Frankfurt, Germany, 30 September, 2013
Projects
BRT-TOD – Vilka krav ställer attraktiv busstrafik av BRT-typ på bebyggelsen?
Funder
Vinnova, 2009-01233
Note

QC 20140528

Available from: 2013-01-15 Created: 2013-01-15 Last updated: 2017-08-10Bibliographically approved
2. Public transportation systems for urban planners and designers: The urban morphology of public transportation systems
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Public transportation systems for urban planners and designers: The urban morphology of public transportation systems
2013 (English)In: Urban Public Transportation Systems 2013 - Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Urban Public Transportation Systems / [ed] Steven L. Jones, Jr., Ph.D., M.ASCE, Paris, France: American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), 2013, 75-89 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The ambition in European cities is to create an integrated, multimodal transportation system which fully exploits the potential of public transportation. The "compact city" and "multimodality" are new fashionable buzzwords. But many, especially smaller cities in Europe developed rapidly in the second half of the 20th century in the years of rapid motorization and decentralization of cities. These cities were designed for the private car and are dominated by individual mobility. The change from a city for a private car to multimodal public transport cities demands major urban transformation. In this article the public transportation systems are seen through a perspective of a morphological concept in urban planning and design established by Kevin Lynch. The public transportation infrastructures are combinations of paths and nodes that disperse distinctive attractiveness pattern of desirability cores that shapes the neighborhoods. There are many examples of integration public transportation systems shaped the urban form. A "public transport city" is a section of a city that historically adapted to specific public transportation systems. There are four distinctive public transport cities which unfold consistent and unique urban form and mobility patterns. Each public transport city has different urban morphology with weaknesses and strengths important for urban designers, planners and developers especially when there is a need to introduce new public transportation systems in urban areas dominated by private cars.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Paris, France: American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), 2013
Keyword
Individual mobility, Mobility pattern, Multi-modal transportation systems, Planning and design, Public transport, Public transportation, Public transportation systems, Urban morphology
National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-138259 (URN)10.1061/9780784413210.008 (DOI)2-s2.0-84892708414 (Scopus ID)978-0-7844-1321-0 (ISBN)
Conference
3rd International Conference on Urban Public Transportation Systems 2013; Paris; France; 17 November 2013 through 20 November 2013
Projects
Vinnova 2009-01233
Note

QC 20140326

Available from: 2013-12-18 Created: 2013-12-18 Last updated: 2017-08-10Bibliographically approved
3. Pushing the urban edge: high speed public transports as future shapers of cities
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Pushing the urban edge: high speed public transports as future shapers of cities
2013 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
National Category
Civil Engineering Transport Systems and Logistics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-116015 (URN)
Conference
20th International Seminar on Urban Form; Brisbane, Australia, 17-20 July, 2013
Projects
BRT-TOD – Vilka krav ställer attraktiv busstrafik av BRT-typ på bebyggelsen?
Funder
Vinnova, 2009-01233
Note

QC 20140528

Available from: 2013-01-15 Created: 2013-01-15 Last updated: 2017-08-10Bibliographically approved
4. Light Railways and Busways as Key Driver for Sustainable Urban Development The Swedish Experiences with Transit-Oriented Development (TOD)
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Light Railways and Busways as Key Driver for Sustainable Urban Development The Swedish Experiences with Transit-Oriented Development (TOD)
2012 (English)In: Sustaining the Metropolis: LRT and Streetcars for Super Cities, Washington, D.C: Transportation Research Board , 2012, 259-278 p., E-C177Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

TOD in a Swedish (European) perspective is by no means a new idea. Three cases of newer light railway and busway projects (Stockholm, Gothenbourg and Norrkoping) are explored in this article and they are seen through a historical overview of the TOD experiences in Sweden and around the world. We also investigate and draw attention to the values of placemaking and sustainable urbanism via the advantages and disadvantages of the urban and regional public transport systems and TOD principles.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Washington, D.C: Transportation Research Board, 2012
Series
Transportation Research Circular
Keyword
transit-oriented development (TOD), Sweden, light railway (LRT), bus rapid transit (BRT), sustainable urbanism, placemaking
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Transport Systems and Logistics Architecture Design Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-109259 (URN)
Conference
12th National Light Rail Conference Sustaining the Metropolis: LRT & Streetcars for Super Cities, November 11-13, 2012 in Salt Lake City, UT, United States
Projects
BRT-TOD – Vilka krav ställer attraktiv busstrafik av BRT-typ på bebyggelsen?
Funder
VINNOVA, 2009-01233
Note

QC 20160622

Available from: 2012-12-23 Created: 2012-12-23 Last updated: 2017-08-10Bibliographically approved
5. Applying the Swedish urban typology in the city of Karlstad: neighborhood conceptualizations for urban development and transformation in the 21st century
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Applying the Swedish urban typology in the city of Karlstad: neighborhood conceptualizations for urban development and transformation in the 21st century
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Many Swedish as many European cities experienced a similar history of urbanization, architectural styles and planning paradigms. Most of the Swedish neighborhoods originate or were modified in the 20th century and many of them, often copyrighted by architects and planners, have been preserved as they were designed. The fundamental urban challenge in this century is to find ways of urban redevelopment, transformation and adaptation of these neighborhoods to futures of social and environmental changes.

The type in urban morphology is the encompassing category that fuses form with time and space and there is a long tradition and established schools in Europe which document the consistencies between urban form, history and society. In this article I analyze the neighborhoods in the city of Karlstad via the previously defined Swedish urban typology. The results show high explanation coefficients and low deviations. The typological neighborhoods have similar urban densities, either as population or work places per hectare or as floor area ratios (FAR) and some neighborhood types even deviate little in income. This allows discussions about urban densities, redevelopment and transformation without really talking about coefficients or numbers.

The results awake a palette of debates. How stereotypical are the urban neighborhoods today and how and should we make them more unique? Are there other alternatives for the 21st century than the urban typologies from the past? Is conceptualizing neighborhoods through typologies enough for urban transformation?

Keyword
urban morphology, typological method, urban transformation, urban form, Karlstad, Sweden
National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-211711 (URN)
Note

QC 20170810

Available from: 2017-08-10 Created: 2017-08-10 Last updated: 2017-08-10Bibliographically approved
6. Is there a place for Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in the Swedish towns and cities?: Applying multi-criteria evaluation (MCE) to evaluate the potential for urban development and transformation along the newly proposed BRT line in Karlstad, Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Is there a place for Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in the Swedish towns and cities?: Applying multi-criteria evaluation (MCE) to evaluate the potential for urban development and transformation along the newly proposed BRT line in Karlstad, Sweden
2011 (English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Karlstad as many smaller towns and cities in Sweden developed rapidly in the 20th century, in years of rapid motorization and decentralization. As a consequence it sprawled into archipelago of urban areas along motorway E18. Karstad was designed for the private car and today it dominated by individual mobility. The change from a city for a private car to multimodal public transport cities demands major urban transformation and adaptation efforts and Karlstadsbuss, the public transportation authority in the city of Karlstad, proposed a new BRT line named Karstadsstråk or Karlstad’s Corridor to improve the bus transportation and achieve better integration with the city. In this project I explore the possibility for urban development and transformation along the newly proposed BRT line in the city of Karlstad by using multi-criteria evaluation (MCE) that consider analysis not only the physical constrains, but also the preferences of the different actors in the urban development. The questions are: What is the development potential of the neighborhoods along the new BRT line? How and which neighborhoods can develop stimulated by the introduction of BRT?

 

If we look at the neighborhood scale and on urban development through neighborhood typologies and typological processes, the development potential along the new BRT line in Karlstad is rather limited. But the urban development can happen on small scale. The small scale can be very important in smaller cities where there is a new urban attractor like BRT. If the city of Karlstad wants to have successful implementation of the newly proposed BRT line it is maybe important to rethink urban integration as urban transformation of the city small scale. One solution involves “BRT free development zones” where small businesses and residents, architects and builders from the city can coordinate and develop their own visions of the future city.

National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-116009 (URN)
Projects
BRT-TOD – Vilka krav ställer attraktiv busstrafik av BRT-typ på bebyggelsen?
Funder
VINNOVA, 2009-01233
Note

QC 20170810

Available from: 2013-01-15 Created: 2013-01-15 Last updated: 2017-08-10Bibliographically approved

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