Blainey, Simon Philip
Forecasting the use of new local railway stations and services using GIS.
University of Southampton, School of Civil Engineering and the Environment,
The aim of this thesis is to develop an integrated methodology for investigating the
potential for new local railway stations within a given area, with particular emphasis on the
use of Geographical Information Systems (GIS). Existing methods for assessing the case
for constructing new local railway stations have often been found wanting, with the
forecasts produced proving to be inaccurate.
A review of previous work in this field has been undertaken and methodologies with the
potential to enhance local rail demand models have been identified. Trip rate and trip end
models have been developed which are capable of forecasting usage at new station sites
anywhere in England and Wales. Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) has been
used to enhance the performance of these models and to account for local variations in the
effects of explanatory variables on rail demand. Flow level models have been produced
for stations in South-East Wales, with a range of model formulations tested. A survey of
ultimate passenger trip origins and destinations was carried out in the same area, enabling
the accuracy of theoretical station catchment definition methods to be tested.
A GIS-based procedure for locating potential sites for new railway stations within a given
area has been developed. This was combined with the results from the demand models and
estimates of associated costs and benefits to give a synthesised appraisal procedure capable
of assessing the case for constructing particular stations. This procedure was applied to 14
sites in South-East Wales and, along with trip end forecasts for 421 sites across the
country, this indicated that there is almost certainly a positive case for constructing a
significant number of new railway stations in the UK.
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