You are on page 1of 8


Engineering Economics Dr. Kaseko

Danielle Stevenson Luky Roxana Lopez Beaujolais Wright

December 3, 2013

1 | Page

Table of Contents
Statement of the Problem: Objective and Motivation: Potential Alternative Solutions: Methodology: Sources

Statement of the Problem:

The strip of Las Vegas is a major source of the citys economy. Transportation in this area can also be very crowded and expensive. The Strip has two main highway off ramps that lead directly into the strip as well as multiple cross streets that makes it hard for consistent movement of cars down Las Vegas Blvd. The purpose of this project is to develop alternative solutions to lessen the traffic on Las Vegas Boulevard. Our group has come up with three ideas to lessen the congestion on the streets of The Strip. With engineering economics, our group can develop the costs and revenues for each alternative. We will also calculate the present worth, maintenance costs and eventual see if increasing public transit is beneficial to increased revenue while bringing congestion down.

Objective and Motivation:

Our group selected the traffic on the Las Vegas Strip as a problem because we all have to deal with the traffic whether it is directly or the congestion on the cross streets caused by the strip. Our goal is to get people to start using public transits and to reduce the traffic. Improvements of the public transit will potentially drop the use of cars, including taxis, and increase the use of one of the potential alternatives. The objective of this project is to compare alternate three types of transportation on the Strip in order to find the most economical solution. We would like to see a monetary value on the construction and potential upkeep a mass transit system does for a city and weigh possible alternatives to get the best possible system at the lowest cost. Seeing the numbers would then give statistical reassurance that a mass transit system
2 | Page

is reasonable or unreasonable.

Potential Alternative Solutions:

Description of Alternatives:
One of the three solutions to improving the public transit of the strip is improving the bus system for Las Vegas Boulevard. If the bus system is improved, more people would probably use it and there would be fewer cars on the street. Some of the many ways to improve the bus system are to make the bus stops more visible and adding bus lanes. Adding bus lanes to The Strip may decrease the number of lanes for the cars, but it will increase the space for buses and bike riders. Another option of adding bus lanes is by taking out the medians and adding the bus lane in the middle. That way there will still be the same number of car lanes and the buses will be out of the way of main traffic. With bus stops being in the middle, they will be more visible by the pedestrians, which may convince them to ride the bus instead of getting a taxi.

3 | Page

Figure 1 Bus lane visualization

Another possible alternative system is a subway system that would run beneath the Strip. Subway systems are convenient and fast for people to use since all interaction takes place underneath the surface and does not interfere with surface traffic. This would take pedestrian traffic away from aboveground and disperse some of the traffic below ground. However, subway systems tend to be used less in the west of the country than the east since they require are large amount of commuting for it to be cost effective. This is probably due to the fact that there arent as many dense urban areas in the west coast as in the east The last alternative is a monorail transit. This would be in addition to the existing Starter system already in place along the Strip. The good thing about monorails are that they dont require the space on the ground like a bus system and dont require that much digging into the earth for applying structural supports. They also require less maintenance to operate the infrastructure and stations. They are popular in places that want to give scenic views of the area that requires transit.

4 | Page

Pros and Cons

The Bus system alternative could stop a lot of people from driving under the influence; it will provide jobs, and decrease the amount of traffic. Although there is a bus system, adding bus lanes could be costly and the construction of the bus lanes would take a while which may cause even more traffic at the already crowded intersections. Some of the pros of a subway system is that it becomes an additional layer of transport underneath the strip, which would give pedestrians another avenue to travel without interacting with surface traffic. Some of the cons would be the amount of time that it takes to build and high costs of the system. The maintenance cost and intervals are significantly higher for subways due to their large infrastructure required to operate. Some of the pros of the monorail is that it adds an above ground layer of transport for pedestrians to use to travel from hotel to hotel and see the town while traveling. However since it is above ground any interference with highways or above ground transport systems would be costly to change out to add in a monorail. Monorails are also exposed to the elements and must be designed extensively to prevent corrosion wear. Monorails are also one of the slower means of rail based transport and can affect ridership and prices.

Data requirements:
List of data required
Initial Cost of Construction We will use the average cost per mile of each system to understand the initial costs required to get the systems installed. Land Acquisition Costs This cost will be already factored into the initial cost of construction. Annual Maintenance Costs We will be using the Tax form and public budgets from cities that use any of our alternatives. Vehicle maintenance We designed the service lives of our alternatives around the lives of the vehicles to

5 | Page

simplify the calculations. Track/Bus lane maintenance This information has been added into the yearly maintenance that would also be used on the busses. Annual Revenue from Mass Transit passes This will be the defining revenues that we use for all methods in determining the positive income. There is also revenue from taxes that get factored into systems but it

In order to evaluate and compare the three alternatives: bus system, subway, and monorail system, the net present worth of the costs and revenues will be calculated over its lifetime. Net Present Worth is the worth of a future set of values decreased to reflect a present sum. We will look into the Initial costs of each alternative and quantify them properly to make the right comparisons for each method. We will look into the data from other Subways/Bus systems/Monorails and find comparative features that will translate into: Annual Maintenance, Annual Revenue, and major Maintenance and potential costs of expansions. Hopefully with this method we can get an initial cost value that can be referenced to investors. Internal Rate of Return method might possibly be used as well to confirm the results of the other calculation. The IRR is a ratio of money gained or lost compared to money invested, which also showcase the income people will get if the project goes to completion. We will also look at an annual rate of return to see how long it will take for investors to get their investment back.

Works Cited
Braun, Ken. "The Detroit People Mover Still Serves as "a Rich Folks' Roller Coaster"" [Michigan Capitol Confidential] . Mackinac Center for Public Policy, 11 Dec. 2007. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Bus Rapid Transit Practitioner's Guide. Washington: Transit Cooperative Research
6 | Page

Program, 2007. Print. Report 118. Chisholm-Smith, Gwen. "Research Results Digest 352." National Cooperative Highway Research Program. The National Academies, Apr. 2011. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Conklin, Ellis E. "Wanna Run the Monorail." Seattle Weekly. N.p., 29 Oct. 2013. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Fleischfresser, Channtal. "Sao Paulo's New Monorail: Too Late for the World Cup?" SmartPlanet. CBS Interactive, 28 June 2011. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. "How Much Does a Monorail Cost?" The MONORAIL Society. The Monorail Society, n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Johnson, Matt. "Does Metro Ask Riders to Pay Too Much? - Greater Greater Washington." Does Metro Ask Riders to Pay Too Much? - Greater Greater Washington. N.p., 20 Feb. 2013. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Las Vegas Monorail Company. Digital image. 2012 Budget. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Dec. 2013. "Las Vegas Resort Corridor Aboveground Monorail Mass Transit System." Lochsa Engineering. Lochsa Engineering, 02 Dec. 2012. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Lepeska, David. "Why $1 Billion Doesn't Buy Much Transit Infrastructure Anymore." David Lepeska. The Atlantic Monthly Group, 09 Nov. 2011. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Levy, Alon. "Monorail Construction Costs | Pedestrian Observations." Pedestrian Observations. N.p., 08 Aug. 2013. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Line, NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- New York City Is Building a New Subway. "Subway Construction Cost for New NYC Line: $4.5 Billion." CNNMoney. Cable News Network, 31 May 2012. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. MacKennie, Christopher. "How Much Does A Bus Cost to Purchase and Operate?" Public Transport., n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. "MBTA Capital Investment Program FY07-FY11." MBTA Financials. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Dec. 2013. Pappa, Erik. "Pedestrian Study for Las Vegas Strip Shows 'Unacceptable' Congestion." Pedestrian Study for Las Vegas Strip Shows 'Unacceptable' Congestion. Clark County NV, 21 Nov. 2012. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Quigley, Tina. "Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada." NTD Program. National Transit Database, 2012. Web. 02 Dec. 2013.
7 | Page

"Sao Paulo, Brazil." Sao Paulo, Brazil. The Monorail Society, n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Schoenmann, Joe. "Study Identifies 17 Pedestrian Bottlenecks On Strip." Las Vegas Sun, 21 Nov. 2012. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. "Statement of Revenue and Expenses." Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. SORE History, n.d. Web. 2 Dec. 2013. "Transit Bus Life Cycle Cost and Year 2007 Emissions Estimation." FTA DOT GOV. N.p., June 2007. Web. 02 Dec. 2013. Villianti, Benjamin. "Subway Lessons from Madrid by Benjamin Villanti, City Journal Spring 2010." Subway Lessons from Madrid by Benjamin Villanti, City Journal Spring 2010. The Manhanttan Institute, Spring 2010. Web. 02 Dec. 2013.

8 | Page