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Title:The Impact of North Dakota's Oil Boom on Transit Livability
Authors:Del Peterson and Elvis Ndembe
Publication Date:Jun 2015
TRID #:01576152
Keywords:forecasting, housing, population growth, public transit, quality of life, ridership, surveys, travel demand
Type:Research Report


Population growth in western North Dakota from those seeking employment in the oil industry has led to substantial increases in personal income and transit ridership. Local survey findings noted that population growth has impacted the quality of life by increasing pressure on infrastructure and increasing feelings of insecurity that stem from demographic shifts and not knowing who is living in local communities. The housing market has also struggled to keep pace. For example, the housing market in the Minot-Williston region is severely tight owing to net in-migration and a dearth in housing for sale.

Transit livability index measures showed an increase in recent years. The combinations of increased ridership and household income have been the two main catalysts for this change. More workers utilizing transit has also led to fewer workers commuting alone to work. However, an increasing mobility needs index and a lack of transit vehicles to meet demand are becoming evident as many of the transit livability indexes are showing smaller increases during the past one to three years compared to earlier gains.

A major finding of this research shows that if the oil boom continues similar to its current pace during the next five years, transit agencies, along with policy makers, should consider expanding services to provide more hours of service along with a larger coverage area to meet new demand. Another major finding is the need for more transit vehicles in the region as well as updating vehicles in current fleets that are beyond their useful life. Increased funding is needed so that transit agencies can improve service levels and meet increasing demand.

How to Cite

Peterson, Del, and Elvis Ndembe. The Impact of North Dakota's Oil Boom on Transit Livability, SURLC 15-002. Montana State University, Bozeman: Small Urban and Rural Livability Center, 2015.

NDSU Dept 2880P.O. Box 6050Fargo, ND 58108-6050