Transit Service Analysis Study

This project is complete. We will no longer update this website.

Buses in Cambridge operate on the street network in mixed traffic, meaning bus passengers are delayed by the same congestion as drivers of single occupancy vehicles.

The Transit Service Analysis study was a data analysis to assess MBTA bus routes in Cambridge to prioritize locations for bus priority street treatments. The Transit Service Analysis helps the City identify needs for bus riders in city street reconstruction and quick-build pilot projects. The study identified street segments from bus stop to bus stop and how delayed or unreliable buses are for riders. In many of these street segments, bus riders make up a large proportion of people travelling on the street, especially during rush hours.

Click here to see a diagram of 2017 areas of concern for bus delay and unreliability

Click here to see more about the City's efforts for bus priority.

We used Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) Automatic Passenger Counter (APC) data to develop and assess three measures of bus delay and unreliability. These were excess travel time, excess passenger travel time, and variability and unreliability of service.

We used these three measures on street segments for most bus routes in Cambridge. The project team then visited six of the ten worst locations. During those visits, the project team examined conditions on the street and opportunities for implementing bus priority treatments.

Next steps will be to design and fund transit priority treatments.

For more information, contact Andrew Reker at or 617/349-6959.