Mobility-on-Demand Meets Shuttles on the Same Mile

44 Pages Posted: 12 Jan 2023

Date Written: January 9, 2023

Abstract

Problem definition. We study a point-to-point transportation problem, where the transportation planner can use both shuttles and mobility-on-demand vehicles (MoDs) to serve the incoming random demand of passengers.

A natural example is the problem of employee commute, a setting where employers often use conventional shuttles to transport their employees to work but sometimes also reimburse ride-sharing trips instead.

We model this situation as a dual sourcing problem, where the transportation planner wants to minimize costs, given a maximum expected waiting time of passengers. Shuttles have a high capacity, arrive at a predefined frequency, and have a low cost-per-seat, and MoDs can only transport one passenger, can be called dynamically, and are more expensive.

We characterize the optimal transportation mode to choose, including hybrid strategies. Specifically, we want to understand how and when MoDs can strengthen traditional static transportation.

Methodology/results. We show that there is always a range of target expected waiting times, for which a combination of shuttles and MoDs in a hybrid strategy is optimal. Further, we show that the hybrid strategy is most useful for intermediate (non-limiting) values of shuttle cost-per-seat, shuttle capacity (at fixed shuttle cost) and passenger arrival rates. We also study and simulate alternative models to better understand the role of MoDs in the hybrid strategy and the impact of variability.

Managerial implications. We suggest a novel way to combine static and dynamic transportation inspired by a popularly studied policy in dual sourcing in the supply chain literature. Most interestingly, we show that while hybrid policies are promising, they deviate from traditional wisdom: to decrease the passenger waiting time, the transportation planner should use \emph{fewer} MoDs.

Keywords: mobility-on-demand, transportation, dual sourcing, stochastic modeling

Suggested Citation

Chopra, Sunil and Martin, Sebastien and Mishra, Partha Sarathi and Smilowitz, Karen, Mobility-on-Demand Meets Shuttles on the Same Mile (January 9, 2023). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4322824

Sunil Chopra

Northwestern University - Kellogg School of Management ( email )

2001 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208
United States

Sebastien Martin

Northwestern University

2001 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208
United States

Partha Sarathi Mishra (Contact Author)

Northwestern University - Kellogg School of Management ( email )

2211 Campus Dr
Evanston, IL 60208
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://parthamishra1996.github.io/

Karen Smilowitz

Northwestern University - Department of Industrial Engineering and Management Sciences ( email )

Evanston, IL 60208-3119
United States

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