Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to design a model enabling recommendation for the new school transport planning proposals to achieve greater operational efficiency. It is a multi-objective optimization problem which includes minimization of the bus costs and total travel time for all students. The model is based on bus route planning according to changes in school starting times, so the buses can make more than one route.
The methodology is based on the School Bus Routing Problem, so that routes from different schools within a given time window are connected, and within the problem constraints so system costs are minimized. The proposed model has been programmed for application in any generic case.
This is a multi-objective problem, for which there are several possible solutions, depending on the weight assigned to each of the variables involved, economic versus social point of view. Therefore, the proposed model will be useful in school transport planning policy, given that it is a support model for making decisions, which seek efficiency in economic and social terms.
The model has been applied in some schools located in an area of Cantabria (Spain), resulting in 71 possible optimal options, which minimize school transport cost between 2.7% and 35.1% regarding current school transport routes, with different school start time and minimum travel time for students.
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