Small Urban and Rural Center on Mobility

Posts tagged as "campus transit"

Watch a Highlight Video of the 2012 APTA Public Transportation & Universities Conference Held in Fargo

MATBUS has posted a highlight video of the 2012 APTA Public Transportation & Universities Conference in Fargo, ND. The conference was hosted by MATBUS, SURTC, and NDSU and was the first APTA conference ever held in North Dakota. Watch the video below.

You can also find this and other MATBUS videos on their YouTube page.


Report Published: North Dakota State University Student Transit Survey, 2010-2011

A new report published by SURTC details the findings from surveys conducted of North Dakota State University (NDSU) students during the fall and spring semesters of 2010-2011. Students were surveyed regarding their travel behavior and experience with Metro Area Transit (MATBUS).

An onboard survey of MATBUS riders on two NDSU campus routes was conducted in late 2010, and an online survey of NDSU students was conducted in the spring of 2011. The onboard survey was conducted both by paper and with the use of smartphones. Responses were received from 120 individuals, mostly NDSU students, for the onboard survey, while the online survey received 858 responses, including responses from both transit users and non-users.

The surveys collected information on student access to vehicles, transportation modes used to travel to campus, factors influencing mode choice, use of transit services, opinions on MATBUS service, thoughts on how to improve service, opinions on marketing efforts and preferred methods of accessing information, interest in wireless Internet access onboard, willingness to pay for transit services, and issues concerning parking.

The publication can be downloaded at the following link: North Dakota State University Student Transit Survey, 2010-2011. Questions related to the research should be directed to Jeremy Mattson (

MATBUS and NDSU to Host National Transit Conference

For the first time in their collective histories, Metro Area Transit (MATBUS) and North Dakota State University (NDSU) will host the American Public Transportation Association’s (APTA) 2012 Public Transportation and University Communities Conference, June 16-19. This national conference is expected to bring almost 150 attendees to Fargo.

The purpose of the conference is to study and analyze the unique needs of university communities and the populations they serve. From land use development to marketing, this conference promises to bring transit, university and student leaders to Fargo to exchange ideas and see the successful collaborations between MATBUS and North Dakota State University.

Following a competitive review process, Fargo was chosen as the host of this conference because of its strong and successful transit partnerships with NDSU. Julie Bommelman, Transit Administrator for the City of Fargo, states, “We consider it a privilege and a unique opportunity to host a conference of this caliber in Fargo. The ever-increasing importance of transit will be showcased during this APTA conference.”

The Small Urban and Rural Transit Center (SURTC) of NDSU is a conference co-host. Jill Hough, Program Director & Advanced Research Fellow for SURTC, states, “APTA is the premiere organization representing public transportation interests across the nation. SURTC has been fortunate to have a long-standing involvement with APTA and MATBUS. This conference is a wonderful opportunity to showcase MATBUS and the extraordinary relationship they have with NDSU.”

Gregg Schildberger, Transit Planner for MATBUS, states “Hosting an APTA conference is a tremendous honor for MATBUS and our entire community. We extend a warm welcome, to the Fargo-Moorhead community, to our guests from APTA and transit agencies across the United States.”

"I applaud MATBUS and NDSU for hosting the conference, which will provide a forum to share practices in planning, implementing, and operating campus transit service," says American Public Transportation President and CEO Michael Melaniphy. "College and university public transportation contributed to a tremendous surge in public transit ridership in the first quarter of this year.  I especially commend MATBUS, whose service has grown significantly, boasting over 2.1 million riders annually, making university transit a vital and integral part of the regional transit service."

MATBUS is the largest rideshare program in the area, offering 25 fixed routes in Fargo, Moorhead, West Fargo and Dilworth, in addition to MAT Paratransit door-to-door services.  In 2011, MATBUS provided a total of 2,159,697 passenger rides. The operation of MATBUS requires a $6.5 million annual investment and 104 employees, which includes administrative staff, bus operators and technicians.

Attend the 2012 APTA Public Transportation & Universities Conference

Attend the 2012 Public Transportation & Universities Conference June 16-19 at the Ramada Plaza & Suites in Fargo, ND.

The conference will address the special transportation needs of university communities and offers a rare opportunity to see how a successful university-transit partnership works. Learn how this partnership has evolved to boost ridership.

The conference agenda includes sessions on:

  • Partnerships
  • Emerging technologies
  • Future university trends
  • New business models
  • Safety and security, emergency preparedness and response
  • Marketing
  • Financing
  • Case studies and more

The program also includes networking opportunities, a minor-league baseball game, a chance to explore Fargo's revitalized and hip downtown, and a private screening at the historic Fargo Theatre.

Register Now for the APTA Public Transportation & Universities Conference in Fargo

Registration is open for the 2012 Public Transportation & Universities Conference. This conference, hosted by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), is scheduled for June 16-19, 2012 (Saturday-Tuesday), at the Ramada Plaza & Suites in Fargo, ND. North Dakota State University and Metro Area Transit (MATBUS) are co-hosting the event. The early fee deadline for registration is May 11.

The preliminary program has been posted. Visit the conference website for more information. The biennial Public Transportation & Universities Conference focuses on the unique needs of university communities and the population they serve.

University of North Dakota Campus Shuttle Study

The University of North Dakota (UND) contracted with SURTC to complete a campus shuttle service and ridership study. The intention of the study was to provide UND leadership with a deeper understanding of students’ attitudes toward, perceptions of, and satisfaction with provided shuttle services. They also desired to identify shuttle service design alternatives that would improve both customer satisfaction and service efficiency and effectiveness.

When asked about specific factors that influenced student mode choice, student survey respondents indicated that convenience was the major factor considered followed by weather, time, accessibility, and parking availability. Student respondents indicated that the key benefit of the current campus shuttle system was also convenience. This benefit was followed by reduced parking demand, money savings, and reduced traffic congestion.

The cost effectiveness of the entire campus shuttle system was also measured. Overall, the operating cost per passenger trip increased from $0.90 in 2006 to $1.18 in 2010, a 31% increase. The completed study can be found here.

SURTC Releases Findings from University Transit Study

The Small Urban and Rural Transit Center (SURTC) recently released the final report from a study on the changing attitudes and travel behaviors of university students. The study tracked a cohort of North Dakota State University students during their undergraduate careers. Over two-thirds of students used transit, roughly the same amount that expect to use transit at least occasionally in the future. Among students in the cohort, 64% stated that they would at least consider voting for increased funding of transit in the future.

The report, The Changing Attitudes and Behaviors of University Students Toward Public Transportation, also investigates the impacts of individual and mode attributes on mode choice. The analysis finds that students prefer walking and transit to travel by automobile. However, over long distances, the short travel times provided by travel by automobile result in it being the dominant mode. This finding supports continuing the redevelop of near-campus areas as well as investigation into express service between campus and off-campus locations with high student residency rates.