Project 3-2

Project R3-3: An Analysis of Demand Response Transit (DRT) Travel of the Elderly, Women and the Disabled in Rural Areas: Implications for Equity and Future DRT Systems   

Exhibit D - Research Project Requirement: PDF Link

Principal Investigator: Candace Brakewood , University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK) 

Other Investigators: Courtney Cronley (UTK), Christopher Cherry (UTK) 

Project Partners: University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK) 

Is any participating institution a Minority Institution? No

Research Project Funding: $150,928 (Federal: $75,000; Non-Federal: $75,928)

Project Status: Active

Project Start and End Date: 01/15/2024 to 01/14/2025 

Project Summary: Demand Response Transit (DRT) services play a crucial part in supporting rural transportation, especially for individuals without private vehicle access. However, the exploration of DRT travel patterns, particularly the differences tied to demographics such as gender, age, and disability remains an underdeveloped area of research. The proposed study begins to fill this gap by analyzing real-world DRT trip data from rural Tennessee. In DRT trip reservation systems, various trip characteristics - such as trip pick-up time, drop-off time, trip distance, and trip purpose - are typically recorded, and some of these systems also collect a small number of demographic variables. For the initial study area in this proposal, the attributes of age, gender and disability status will be considered. The proposed analysis will focus on the differences in DRT travel patterns across gender, age and disability status, and their intersection, within the rural American context. The proposed analysis will include cross-tabulation statistics by demographic group and cluster analysis to identify different DRT trip patterns. This study is particularly pertinent given the characteristics of rural communities, such as widespread destinations, limited transit alternatives, and an aging demographic, which underscore the important role of DRT in rural communities throughout the United States.