In 1999, TCRP conducted research to assess the current public perceptions of public transportation and to identify how these perceptions might be changed. This research was instrumental in providing guidance in the development of Public Transportation Partnership for Tomorrow (PT)2, implemented by the American Public Transportation Association, and of the Visibility, Image and Positioning (VIP) campaign implemented by the Canadian Urban Transit Association. The first phase of the (PT)2 and VIP programs focused on the importance of public transportation in providing freedom, mobility, and choice to Americans and Canadians. The strategies employed during this first phase were successful in raising awareness of the need for public transportation and the value it brings to the community.
TCRP Report 63, Enhancing the Visibility and Image of Transit in the United States and Canada, has been used by many transit systems to design their marketing programs. The study introduced new research concepts and brought new data to the decision-making process. Because TCRP Report 63 is 6 years old, it is necessary to review and validate the information and to present new developments and research results related to public perceptions about public transportation. In addition, the public transportation industry must identify the values and decision-making processes that motivate people to support public transportation. Once these values have been identified, the industry should explore the best strategies for accomplishing a change in perceptions that motivate people to take action. The findings will be useful to the transit industry in increasing ridership and developing support for public transportation at the national, regional, and state levels.
The objectives of this research are to (1) identify values, perceptions, and decision-making processes that lead to behaviors that affect the degree of support for and use of public transportation; and (2) determine the most effective methods for motivating individuals to take action in support of public transportation. The results of this research should be useful to transit agencies; elected officials; community leaders; business leaders; and federal, state, and local funding agencies in both the United States and Canada.
Status: The revised final report has been published as TCRP Report 122. The report refers to unpublished Appendices A-F.