Thursday, August 18, 2011

2010 on-time performance data

After I found the 2010 ridership data for “Ridership grows and sets new record in 2010”, I stumbled upon on-time performance data for January- June 2010 and July-December 2010 . The data samples capture the morning peak hours only: 6 am to 9 am.

If your routes have not been altered much for September, you should check out these documents to see how often your routes were early or late.

Glen McGregor, of the Ottawa Citizen, wrote an extensive report on OCTranspo reliability last year using GPS data from April 2009 to March 2010. The methodology on data collection and further details on the data can be found there. McGregor points out “the data show that, system-wide, 41 per cent of buses are measured ahead of schedule. (OC Transpo puts the figure at 38 per cent on regular routes.)”. That figure has slightly dropped for the period of July-December 2010 at 34 per cent for regular routes.

OC Transpo considers on-time as “running no more than 5 minutes late”, which means “late” is more than five minutes. The following figures are for the period of July-December 2010:

Most likely to be late

Commuter routes:
Route Late
63 24%
261 20%
61 13%
69 13%
71 13%
262 13%
Of the six late commuter routes listed above, four start in Kanata, one in Barrhaven, one in Nepean, and none in Orleans.

Regular routes:
Route Late
82 15%
57 13%
7 12%
15 11%
179 11%
Routes 7 and 15 do not travel on the Transitway. Routes 15, 82, 57, and 179 are peak hour routes. I'm surprised that routes 1, 12, or 118 didn't make this list since they are known for their late trips.

Least likely to be late

Commuter routes:
Route Late
20 2%
32 3%
22 3%
38 4%
37 4%
34 4%
These routes all begin in Orleans. This could mean that the streets in Orleans have less traffic than the roads in Kanata and Barrhaven.

Regular routes:
Route Late
121 0%
183 1%
173 1%
171 1%
162 1%
136 1%
135 1%
123 1%
If you were a regular user of route 121 between July and December 2010, you were very lucky. The 121 is a short route and I suspect it has low ridership. The purpose of the route is to serve the Ottawa Train Yards shopping area. To get an idea of how short this route is, during the AM rush, the 121 leaves Hurdman at 7:56 am and arrives at its destination, St. Laurent station at 8:09 am. This is a 13-minute trip during morning peak hours, which explains its reliability. As for the the remaining routes listed, they serve low-density residential areas with the exception of route 183, which travels to Scotiabank Place.

Most likely to be early

Commuter routes:
Route Early
245 30%
232 26%
20 15%
The unusually high percentage of early trips on rural express routes 245 and 232 may be due to low ridership and/or low traffic volume.

Regular routes: 
Route Early
105 73%
167 66%
163 65%
194 61%
Do not adjust your computer monitor. Route 105 was early 73% of the time and more than half of its trips were more than 2 minutes early. The fact that these routes were more likely to be early than on time certainly surprised me and one can wonder why this is such a frequent occurrence.

If you regularly use any of the routes listed above, I would be interested to know the reason(s) for their chronic earliness or lateness. 


Dan said...

Is data available for buses that never show up at all? I've found the #1 more likely to just never come, particularly on the southbound trip in the afternoons.

Anonymous said...

The problem with that data is that the GPS system used on the buses can be fickle...

I know sometimes when I do a specific route sometimes when I come to the end of the line, it will show me early going in the other direction, even though my time as per the schedule, hasn't even passed yet. (does that make sense?)

Apparently, they are trying to fix these anomolies, and I beleive this is the reason that Mercier pulled the live apps that were created last year for Ottawa's app design contest.

Peter Raaymakers said...

The rural express routes being early doesn't surprise me in the slightest, but it's not because they've got low ridership; a lot of them are pretty full. It's likely because rural express routes don't make an effort to slow down if they're running early, which would mean they get earlier and earlier as the route goes on.

Wes Chu said...


you can find data on cancelled trips going back to December 2010:

Keep in mind, these are not all the cancelled trips since December 2010 because had some cancellations in a different format that couldn't be picked up.

Anonymous said...

There are a few issues with this data

1) What exactly do they mean by early/on time/late....where on the route. A bus could be all of these.

2) The morning is a terrible time to measure this on routes such as the 12 which during afternoon periods tend to have tons of special needs passengers (wheelchairs, walkers, strollers, etc...) which take longer to load and make a bus less predictable since you don't know where and when those delays will appear. Typically most public transit systems measure things during PM rush because that is the busiest time with the greatest combination of passenger types. Most riders at 6 or 7 in the morning are commuters playing out their daily routine. They don't ask drivers many questions which can slow things down too.

WJM said...

Seriously; what about on-time performance during the rest of the day?

It's pretty obvious OC Transpo has never been serious about schedule adherence, if they are so selective about what they measure.

Anonymous said...

Route 105 is a high frequency shuttle rule to get rush hour commuters dumped at Lebretton by express buses across to the office towers in Hull. It basically fills up at the Lebreton stop (entire Artic bus one stop!) and heads across and unloads. It runs every couple minutes. Schedule compliance isn't really a big deal. Moving huge numbers of people quickly is the goal. Load and go...keep it moving...

Anonymous said...

S'il vous plait pourriez vous transmettre au conducteurs de faire plus attention sur les stations. J'attendais le bus n°1 sur la station, depuis 3 minutes avant l'heure de passage. Comme c'est la nuit, je me suis expressément arrangée pour être à l'heure et pouvoir prendre ce bus.
Comme par hasard, une voiture c'est stationnée tout près de la station de bus pour faire descendre un passager et le bus arrivais au même moment. Sauf que le chauffeur n'a même pas regardé s'il y a quelqu'un qui attendait le bus, alors de plus je lui faisais le signe de la main pour qu'il s’arrête. Je vous pris de bien faire attention, surtout dans les heures tardives, car les écarts entre les bus deviennent très long et étant féminine, seule et crevée après le travail je ne voudrai pas rester 30 min voir plus de temps dehors en pleine nuit.
Je vous remercie de prendre ma plainte en considération.

Anonymous said...

I am making a compliant about the 151 going towards westgate mall that you have to wait at the bus stop for 2 hours before the bus comes. you should have all the buses run all every hour on the hour no matter where abouts you live. thanks

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