Long Term Trends in Customer Satisfaction of D.C. Circulator

Oct. 15, 2013
Mineta National Transit Research Consortium reports on the impact on the customer satisfaction since the introduction of the bus circulator in 2005 in Washington, D.C.

Since 2005, the Downtown Business Improvement District (DCBID) in Washington, D.C., has been conducting surveys in the summer months to monitor trends in patronage and customer satisfaction with the services provided by the DC Circulator, a local bus transit system designed to facilitate travel to and within the central business area.

The DC Circulator provides a bridge between fringe areas not served by regional transit and Metro rail and bus services. The DC Circulator was created as a public-private partnership in 2003 that involves the District Department of Transportation (DDOT), the Washington Metropolitan Transit Authority (WMATA) and DC Surface Transit, Inc. DC Surface Transit Inc. is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting travel via the DC Circulator. DCBID conducted annual patron surveys only during summer months as part of its performance management program initiative.

This study examined the survey instrument used for the summer surveys of the DC Circulator, optimized the questions for a more corporative response from patrons, and analyzed the survey data to determine trends in ridership and basic characteristics of riders. This study modified the scope of the DCBID survey by conducting on-board surveys in both summer and fall in 2012, investigated trends in the feedback from patrons during each summer from 2005 through 2012, and compared trends in patron feedback obtained in fall of 2012.