The VIA Performance Dashboard includes metrics that are standard in the transit industry and some of which are required by the Federal Transit Administration’s National Transit Database. The VIA Performance Dashboard includes the following measures:
  • Ridership
  • On-Time Performance
  • Collision Rate
  • Customer Complaint Rate
  • Mechanical Reliability
  • Cost Effectiveness
  • ...
    Dashboard Organization:
    The VIA Performance Dashboard landing page provides the total system-wide bus service performance metrics for the current month. An explanation of the performance measures are provided in the menu entitled “Performance Measure Explanation.” The user may access trend and comparison data by clicking on the measure title. The following information is provided in table and chart format for each measure:
  • Total system-wide performance
  • Average weekday performance trend
  • Total Month performance trend
  • Route performance comparison, where applicable


  • The transit industry defines ridership as the number of passengers who board public transportation vehicles—called unlinked passenger trips.
  • Ridership measures transit utilization at the system, route, mode and service type level.
  • ...
  • A passenger is counted each time when boarding a vehicle no matter how many vehicles are used to travel from trip origin to destination.
  • Riders are counted whether a fare is paid or not. For example, a rider not required to pay a fare such as a personal care attendant or a young child is counted in the ridership totals.


    The transit industry perhaps most important measure of service quality is on-time performance. From a customer viewpoint, on-time performance reflects reliability or dependability of the system. The VIA Dashboard On-time Performance metric defines on-time as follows:

    For local, downtown circulators and commuter express fixed-route services where riders plan their trip around the published schedule time,
    ... reliability is measured as a bus that arrives within five minutes after the scheduled time at target bus stops along the route [Bus operators are instructed not to depart any time point location ahead of the scheduled time].

  • 95 – 100% Passengers that make a round trip every weekday (with no transfers on fixed-route) experience about 2 trips that are not-on-time monthly
  • 90 – 94% Passengers that make a round trip every weekday (with no transfers on fixed-route) experience about 4 trips that are not- on-time monthly
  • 80 – 89% Passengers that make a round trip every weekday (with no transfers on fixed-route) experience about 8 trips that are not-on-time monthly.
  • 70 – 79% Passengers that make a round trip every weekday (with no transfers on fixed-route) experience about 12 trips that are not-on-time monthly. Fixed-route passengers that make a round trip every weekday with a transfer experiences 20 trips that are not-on-time every month
  • < 70% Passengers perceive service as unreliable with about one-third or more of trips that are not on-time.


    A common safety measure is the number of major vehicle collisions per 100,000 service vehicle miles, and is a key agency focus. From the customer perspective, the measure reflects safety perception. The VIA Dashboard Major Collision metric uses the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) report collision definition and thresholds. Major collisions include:
  • Property damage equal to or exceeding $25,000
  • ...
  • One or more persons immediately transported for medical attention (injury)
  • Fatality
  • Evacuations for life safety reasons
  • Collisions where a transit or non-transit vehicle is towed due to disabling damage


  • Complaint-based measures are a collective measure of customer perceptions.
  • Customer complaints per 10,000 boardings measures the amount of customer complaints received over a specific period reported.
  • The VIA Dashboard Complaint metric reports all complaints received to include driver courtesy to consistently late vehicles to inadequate air conditioning.
  • ...
  • VIA evaluates, categorizes and responds to all complaints.
  • Trends are tracked and VIA identifies where potential operational strengths and weaknesses exist.

Mechanical Reliability

  • A transit industry measure of fleet quality and fleet maintenance is distance traveled between a major mechanical failure.
  • From the customer viewpoint, the measure reflects the probability that a vehicle will break down while in service.
  • ...
  • The VIA Dashboard Mechanical Reliability metric uses the Federal Transit Administration major mechanical definition—mechanical problems that are failures of a mechanical element that prevents the revenue vehicle from completing a scheduled revenue trip or from starting the next scheduled revenue trip because actual movement is limited or because of safety concerns.
  • Major Mechanical Failures include failure categories such as brakes, doors, engine cooling, steering, axles, suspension, air system, transmission, electrical system.

Cost Effectiveness

  • Operating cost per passenger trip is a critical cost-effectiveness measure.
  • This measure combines elements of operating efficiency and service productivity (passengers per hour).
  • Operating cost per passenger trip is a measure that decision makers typically look to understand what a trip for one passenger costs to provide.
  • ...
  • The VIA Dashboard operating cost per passenger trip includes operating costs such as operator wages, fuel, maintenance, utility and support costs.
  • Operating cost per passenger trip is a key measure for examining a transit provider’s ability to carry out a core function—that is, transport passengers in a cost-effective manner.