The Impact of Croydon Tramlink

The Impact of Croydon Tramlink


G Copley and M Thomas, FaberMaunsell



Croydon Tramlink is a 28.2Km light rail system, which was promoted by London Transport and the London Borough of Croydon. It became fully operational on 30 May 2000, re-introducing street running light rail to London after an absence of almost 50 years. The three lines provide a fast, frequent and reliable connection to and through Croydon on an east-west axis, using modern light rail vehicles. This paper describes the results from an Impact Study, undertaken by Oscar Faber, on behalf of Transport for London, adding significantly to the paper presented at last year?s conference and providing insights into where the patronage on this successful system has been drawn from. The overall

h4. Objective of the Study was to

understand the effect that the new system has had on travel patterns in the area, and to provide evidence on the transfer to Tramlink from other modes of travel.

The impact was assessed by the use of Pre- and Post-opening surveys. Pre-opening surveys were undertaken in late 1999 and early 2000, with the following elements:

* home interview surveys which included a day?s travel diary and questions about perceptions of Tramlink.

* stated preference interviews (with a sub-sample of the HIS respondents) designed to explore perceptions of light rail relative to other modes;

* depth interviews with a number of key ?agents of change?; and

* cataloguing the characteristics of the transport system both before and immediately after the opening of the system.

The impact of the system was determined by Post-opening surveys (in late 2000 and early 2001), repeating the home interview and agents of change surveys, as much as possible with the same respondents. This effectively provides a panel of respondents (although substitution is required where households have moved or are unavailable or unwilling to repeat the survey). Use of the same respondents removes some of the inter-personal variation in the travel patterns, facilitating greater focus on actual changes in travel behaviour, and the reasons underlying those changes.

The stated preference interviews were not repeated, but detailed revealed preference data was collected from all respondents for all feasible modes, relating to a particular trip for which the use of Tramlink is in scope. For those respondents to the SP surveys, the ?in-scope? trip was used in the RP exercise, allowing a direct comparison of revealed and stated preference. In addition, self-completion user surveys have been conducted as part of the post-opening surveys, and include questions relating to the mode used prior to the introduction of Tramlink.The paper will concentrate on changes in travel characteristics, adding significantly to the paper presented at last year?s conference, but will also cover:

* the sampling and methodological issues encountered during the design and implementation of the surveys;

* the changes in travel characteristics (including modal transfer) determined from the surveys;

* perceptions and attitudes (and changes in perceptions) towards Tramlink and other modes in the study area;

* implications for the use of stated preference and models for forecasting LRT patronage.


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