Optimizing bus services with variable directional and temporal demand using genetic algorithm

He zhou Qu, Steven I.Jy Chien, Xiao bo Liu, Pei tong Zhang, Athanassios Bladikas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


As a major mode choice of commuters for daily travel, bus transit plays an important role in many urban and metropolitan areas. This work proposes a mathematical model to optimize bus service by minimizing total cost and considering a temporally and directionally variable demand. An integrated bus service, consisting of all-stop and stop-skipping services is proposed and optimized subject to directional frequency conservation, capacity and operable fleet size constraints. Since the research problem is a combinatorial optimization problem, a genetic algorithm is developed to search for the optimal result in a large solution space. The model was successfully implemented on a bus transit route in the City of Chengdu, China, and the optimal solution was proved to be better than the original operation in terms of total cost. The sensitivity of model parameters to some key attributes/variables is analyzed and discussed to explore further the potential of accruing additional benefits or avoiding some of the drawbacks of stop-skipping services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1786-1798
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Central South University
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering
  • Metals and Alloys


  • bus transit
  • cost
  • genetic algorithm
  • optimization
  • service patterns
  • travel time


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