Pedestrian route choices between escalator and stairway in MTR stations

C. Y. Cheung, Hing Keung William Lam

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

115 Citations (Scopus)


Passenger demands on underground stations are always excessive and can cause severe congestion. The study of pedestrian behavior is particularly important in planning and design of the underground stations during peak hours. This paper reports an investigation on the behavior of pedestrians in choosing between escalators and stairways in Hong Kong Mass Transit Railway (MTR) stations during peak hours. Time-lapse photography surveys were conducted in six selected MTR stations to collect the relevant data. The travel time functions of the vertical pedestrian facilities have been calibrated and are used for developing the pedestrian route choice model. Service levels have been defined for the vertical pedestrian facilities based upon the service levels defined by previous researchers. It was found that the stairway capacities in the ascending and descending directions in the Hong Kong Mass Transit Railway stations are higher than in London Underground stations. It was also found that the pedestrians are more sensitive to the relative delays when using the vertical pedestrian facilities in the descending direction than in the ascending direction.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)277-285
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Transportation Engineering
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Transportation


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