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New TCRP Reports Inform Analysis, Decision Making

Three new reports from the Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) provide practical, timely, and relevant information for public transportation leaders in critical areas: research that can determine which routes will have the greatest potential to attract more riders, analysis of the legal ins and outs of public-private partnerships, and a review of health insurance privacy laws on public transit and paratransit operations.

Making Effective Fixed-Guideway Transit Investments: Indicators of Success (Report 167) is a two-volume report that provides a data-driven, indicator-based model for predicting the success of a fixed-guideway transit project based in part on expected ridership.

“With capital costs ranging from tens of millions to several billion dollars, decisions on whether to build a fixed-guideway transit project, and what kind of project to build, are not taken lightly by local officials or their funding partners,” the report states. “Such decisions may follow many years of planning and analysis at the system, corridor, and project levels. It can cost millions of dollars just to develop and apply the analysis tools that are typically used to evaluate alternative projects.”

The report strives to “predict predicting the potential success of a fixed-guideway transit project.”

Transit Public-Private Partnerships: Legal Issues (Legal Research Digest 45) provides research and information to help public transit leaders better understand, develop, and negotiate public-private partnerships (PPPs).

“Transit-related PPPs have the potential to involve complex concession agreements in which private entities may design, build, finance, operate, and maintain entire transit corridors or modalities for a transit agency,” the report states. The 300-page report explores several components of PPPs in detail.

How the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and Other Privacy Laws Affect Public Transportation Operations (Legal Research Digest 46) provides an in-depth look at this complex issue as it affects public transit systems.

“On the face of it, transit agencies that provide public transportation, including paratransit services, would not normally be covered entities and the HIPAA privacy rule would not apply to them,” the digest notes. “However, many transit agencies have been advised by attorneys that HIPAA does apply, at least for certain types of information.” In addition, the 240-page report states that basic trip information could trigger HIPAA requirements.

To download TCRP reports, click here.
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