Archives for National Bus Trader

Crime Does Not Always Pay

This is even true in public transportation, where it usually does. Just look at the non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT) sector (see and, where two mega-brokers – Motivcare (formerly LogistiCare) and Veyo (formally MTM) — steal between $200B and $300B a year (my conservative estimate) from our healthcare system. The corruption of Uber and Lyft is comparable but not as nuanced. And because Uber and Lyft are not “middlemen,” like brokers, the complexity of filing against them does not frighten away so many attorneys. Plus, the typical lazy lawyer too cheap and lazy to find and converse with an

Making Public Transportation Work, Part 7 –The Cost of Failure

The previous six installments of this series identified and explored, in considerable detail, the elements needed to make a public transportation system work. Not a hodgepodge of disjointed and sometimes overlapping or duplicative services. But a collection of system elements which fit together to form a coherent system. The goal of this series was not historical, although various installments note that every one of these elements was given serious consideration, often supported by a considerable number of articles and, often, substantial studies, in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In some cases, these elements were actually implemented, often as “demonstration

Making Public Transportation Work, Part 6: High Occupancy Vehicle Lanes

High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes are the sixth element of public transportation services to be covered in this National Bus Trader series. Previous segments of this series covered other missing elements: Alternative Work Schedules (, Park-and-Ride Lots (; Feeder Service (; System Design and Networks ( and Ridesharing. This segment covering HOV lanes somewhat overlaps some points made in the Ridesharing installment. However, this is somewhat true of every element in this series. This is so because, in an optimal system, all elements must work together. And, working together, one element necessarily overlaps or intersects with fellow elements. This is

Making Public Transportation Work, Part 5: Ridesharing

This article is the fifth component of this series describing critical “missing pieces” of an operable public transit network (see;, and This installment overviews another essential component of public transportation that, like the other components, has gone largely missing for decades: Ridesharing. As I reminded National Bus Trader readers often, all these elements were not just ideas kicked around in the 1970s. Many were implemented, to a great degree, that decade – and to lesser and lesser degrees afterwards, as our cities swelled in population and workers, traffic levels exploded, and air quality declined to a

Making Public Transportation Work, Part 4: System Design and Networks

I have written about the regrettable disappearance of system design in prior National Bus Trader articles (see; – including the substitution of robots for live Earthlings for creating routes and schedules and selecting stops (see Today, the term “system design” is most-commonly applied to digital systems or applications. In transportation, system design refers to an effort to configure the vehicles of a single mode, or a combination of modes, into some coherent form so that they work together as a system. At its best, the design of a public transportation system includes multiple modes (or types of

Making Public Transportation Work, Part 3: Feeder Service

Continuing with this series describing critical “missing pieces” of an operable public transit network (see and, this installment overviews yet another essential component of public transportation that has gone largely missing for decades: Feeder Service. In limited contexts, some feeder service still exists. The most common and visible remnant is service to airports – provided by a variety of modes including taxis, transportation network companies (which smother almost everything else on access roads in front of most or many airports’ terminals), personal automobiles (“visitors” dropping off or picking up airport passengers typically comprise about a third of the

Making Public Transportation Work, Part 2: Park and Ride Lots

Particularly regarding fixed route transit and paratransit, the abandonment of designing a system has cost these modes dearly. This is largely because software emerged in the early 1990s to configure routes, establish schedules select stops and dispatch – and we stopped bothering. As all National Bus Trader readers know, transportation involves more than just the vehicles. There must be roads, bridges, tunnels, rest stops and parking lots – for starters. And this is only if the “system” comprises personal vehicles, trucks and taxis. For shared-ride vehicles, especially large ones (buses and motorcoaches), much more is needed for a “system” to

Making Public Transportation Work, Part 1: Alternative Work Schedules

To be blunt, public transportation has become our nation’s worst industry. Worst than Big Pharma. Worst than Big Energy. Worse even than the U.S. Healthcare industry – although these bastions of corruption, incompetence, waste and reckless disregard share many characteristics in common with public transportation. The tragedy is that it was not always this way. Even in “The Car Country,” public transportation had plenty of great moments and great thoughts. Regrettably, most of these occurred in the 1960s and 1970s. More tragically, many of these ideas are even more feasible – and far-more-needed — now. On the positive side, internal

Uber and Lyft – Defendants Most Vulnerable, Lawsuits Most Lucrative

Uber, Lyft and other TNCs (Transportation Network Companies) are part of the largest, most extensive and diverse criminal enterprise this country has ever seen. Having this network’s activities exposed in open court would not only disclose their collusion with countless other companies, but could mean the end of their operations in your State – and possibly beyond. Or it could lead to regulations that would kill their business model and crush their profits. Facing someone with my knowledge, these companies would NEVER proceed to trial: Their practices would be exposed even if they won. The principal challenge is to control

Congestion Pricing: How it Can Make Sense

Lately, the phrase “the first time in our nation’s history” has been uttered a lot. These “firsts” are rarely acknowledged when the event is not of mainstream interest. And it is rarely acknowledged even when it morphs into a huge, household phenomenon. This up-and-coming phenomenon – congestion pricing – may soon become one of those events. Unfortunately, without many other much-needed changes, congestion pricing may quickly fizzle into a minor, historic footnote (as it has done for most of the past 50 years). However, if it succeeds – which it will if accompanied by the other changes needed to make