The study of pedestrian activities in an urban transportation system is very essential for the normal operation of the system. The bulk queueing phenomenon is an interesting type of pedestrian activity, and occurs in pedestrian facilities such as transportation terminals, and urban intersections.
This study considers the bulk queueing phenomenon at metro station platforms. It asserts that the analysis and design of these facilities should be based on the consideration of queueing and circulation area requirements. The time-space technique is used for the first time in the analysis of a metro station platform. The application of the technique was proved to be successful, exactly like its first application for the analysis of pedestrian traffic in urban intersections.
A survey was conducted at a station platform of the Montreal metro system for the collection of the required data, which were then analyzed using a computer program. For the purpose of the use of the time-space method, the arrival distribution of passengers on the platform was studied, in order to calculate the average waiting time of passengers on the platform. The analysis showed that the level of service at the specific platform fluctuates between A and E, depending on the time of the day, and the passenger activities during the analysis (i.e. during the alighting period the level of service is lower than during the headway). In addition, the time-space method was applied for the calculation of the maximum number of passengers that a platform can handle. Finally, the application of the method for the design of a platform was examined, by comparing the results of the time-space technique with the results of a previous design using traditional methods. The results compared favorably, with the time-space method giving a more accurate design.