GEP  Vol.2 No.2 , April 2014
Investigation of SkyCabs Monorail System in Urban Regions
Abstract: The increased popularity of the private vehicle and the low budgets available to public-transport (PT) planners has meant that PT patronage has decreased significantly from what it once was. This has led to congestion and pollution problems in many cities around the world. It is thus apparent that new, high quality and sustainable PT system is needed to open the opportunity to attract more people to use PT. This work describes such a system called SkyCabs. The SkyCabs concept is comprised of many, lightweight, driverless cabs running two ways on a single elevated monobeam. With each cab seating up to eight people, the aim is to create a feeling of personal travel, and in doing so increase the level of patronage on PT services. The SkyCabs system is investigated based on the following three criteria; a comparative analysis which involves researching and comparing system characteristics, a computer simulation analysing operational feasibility and an economic analysis which involves calculating and comparing the benefit-cost ratios for each mode analysed. A background section has been included to provide information on existing PT modes which have been compared to SkyCabs throughout this work. The SkyCabs concept has been deemed feasible within an urban context such as the North Shore of Auckland, New Zealand. This finding is based on a comparison with other options investigated and it is due to SkyCabs favourable characteristics, the high level of service offered and the low cost of implementation relative to return benefits.  
Cite this paper: Ceder, A. , Roberts, M. and Schermbrucker, R. (2014) Investigation of SkyCabs Monorail System in Urban Regions. Journal of Geoscience and Environment Protection, 2, 96-113. doi: 10.4236/gep.2014.22015.

[1]   Åberg, L. (1988). Driver Behavior at Flashing-Light, Rail Highway Crossings. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 20, 59-65.

[2]   Auckland Regional Council (2010). Like a Railway, but with Buses. Region Wide—News and views from the Auckland Regional Council.

[3]   Auckland Regional Transport (2010). Auckland Regional Land Transport Strategy, 2010-2040 [Electronic Resource]. Auckland, NZ: Auckland Regional Council.

[4]   Bachels, M., Newman, P. D., & Kenworthy, J. R. (1999). Indicators of Urban Transport Efficiency in New Zealand’s Main Cities: An International City Comparison of Transport, Land Use and Economic Indicators. Murdoch, WA: Institute for Science and Technology Policy, Murdoch University.

[5]   Carnegie, J. A., Voorhees, A. M., & Hoffman, P. S. (2007). Viability of Personal Rapid Transit in New Jersey. Presented to Governor Jon S. Corzine and The New Jersey State Legislature: Department of Transportation, The State of New Jersey.

[6]   Ceder, A. (2006). Planning and Policy of Ferry Passenger Service in Hong Kong. Transportation, 33, 133-152.

[7]   Ceder, A. (2007). Public Transit Planning and Operation: Theory, Modelling and Practice. London: Elsevier.

[8]   Chapman, H. (2006). SkyCabs Your Destination, Our Goal.

[9]   Chapman, H., Chapman, M., & Ceder, A. (2011). A New Architectural Design of Elevated Small Group Automated Rapid Transit. Journal of Public Transportation, 14, 63-87.

[10]   Cleghorn, D. (2009). Improving Pedestrian and Motorist Safety along Light Rail Alignments. TCRP Report 137, Washington DC: Transportation Research Board.

[11]   Coleman, A. (2010). Transport Infrastructure, Lock-Out, and Urban Form: Highway Development in Auckland and the United States. In RESEARCH, M. E. A. P. P. (Ed.).

[12]   Davidson, S. (2004). Ultra-Light Rail is Moving Right along. (Progress) (Bishop Austrans Mass Transit Rail system). Ecos, 13.

[13]   Dawson, P. E. (2003). SkyCabs: An Analysis of an Alternative Transport Proposal for the Auckland Region. Research Study (BPlan)—University of Auckland.

[14]   Fabian, L. (2004). The Safety Record of Automated Guideway Transit. A Planners Guide to Automated People Movers. Trans. 21, Transportation Systems of the Twenty-First Century. Boston.

[15]   Grimes, A. (2007). Transformative Transport: Transport and Economic Transformation. In Transport—The Next 50 Years Conference. Christchurch.

[16]   Harris, C. E. (2005). Slow Train Coming: The New Zealand State Changes Its Mind about Auckland Transit, 1946-56. Urban Policy and Research, 23, 37-55.

[17]   Haub, C. (2008). 2008 World Population Data Sheet. 2008 Population Reference Bureau.

[18]   Hawkes, G. (2008). Dedicated Busway a Roaring Success. LG Mediawebnz.

[19]   Hensher, D. A. (2007). Bus Transport: Economics, Policy and Planning. Research in Transportation Economics, 18, xix, 1-xxviii, 507.

[20]   Jakob, A., Craig, J. L., & Fisher, G. (2006). Transport Cost Analysis: A Case Study of the Total Costs of Private and Public Transport in Auckland. Environmental Science and Policy, 9, 55-66.

[21]   Kerr, A. D., James, P. A., & Craig, A. P. (2005). Infrastructure Cost Comparisons for PRT and APM. ASCE APM05 Special Sessions on PRT.

[22]   Laird, P. G., Newman, P., Bachels, M., & Kenworthy, J. (2001). Back on Track: Rethinking Transport Policy in Australia and New Zealand. Sydney: UNSW Press.

[23]   Lee, M. (2011). The Fall and Rise of Public Transport in Auckland (Part 1). YouTube.

[24]   Lowson, M. (2005). Personal Rapid Transit for Airport Applications. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, 1930, 99-106.

[25]   Maxx—Auckland Transport. (2012).

[26] (2012).

[27]   Muller, P. J. (2007). A Personal Rapid Transit/Airport Automated People Mover Comparison. In Varma, A. (Ed.), Aviation: A World of Growth. The 29th International Air Transport Conference. Irving Texas: American Society of Civil Engineers.

[28]   Niches (2010). Guidelines for Implementers of Group Rapid Transit (GRT).

[29]   NZTA (2010). Economic Evaluation Manual. New Zealand Transport Agency.

[30]   NZTA (2012). State Highway Traffic Data Booklet. New Zealand Transport Agency.

[31]   Quigley, J. M. (1988). Urban Diversity and Economic Growth (Urban Agglomeration). Journal of Economic Perspectives, 12, 127.

[32]   Sulkin, M. A. (1999). Personal Rapid Transit Déjà Vu. Transportation Research Record, 1677, 58-63.

[33]   Sullivan, C., & O’Fallon, C. (2003). Vehicle Occupancy in New Zealand’s Three Largest Urban Areas. In 26th Australasian Transport Research Forum. Wellington.

[34]   Tassi, P., Saremi, M., Schimchowitsch, S., Eschenlauer, A., Rohmer, O., & Muzet, A. (2010). Cardiovascular Responses to Railway Noise during Sleep in Young and Middle-Aged Adults. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 108, 671-680.

[35]   Thompson, D. J. (2009). Railway Noise and Vibration [Electronic Resource]: Mechanisms, Modelling and Means of Control. Amsterdam, Boston: Elsevier.

[36]   Willmott, D. B. (1998). Urban Traffic “Problems” and the Prospects for Public Transport in Auckland. Wellington, NZ: Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand.

[37]   Wright, C., & Egan, J. (2000). De-Marketing the Car. Transport Policy, 7, 287-294.