Cape May County Introduction



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Cape May County

file:map of new jersey highlighting cape may county.svg

Introduction

Cape May County is located at the southernmost tip of New Jersey. It is surrounded on by the Delaware Bay and the Atlantic Ocean to the southwest, south, and east. Its population as of 2009 was 96,392, though in summer months that number can swell up to nearly 8 times that size, as its main industry is tourism. Cape May is 620 square miles, 255 of which is land. It is bordered by Atlantic County to the north and Cumberland County to the northwest. Most of its population is found on the coastal areas such as Ocean City, Avalon, Stone Harbor, the Woodbine area, and the Cape May area. Being at the south of New Jersey, Cape May’s winters are milder than other counties, and it also has milder summers compared to most other places in New Jersey.

For previous years’ reports, click here, here (p. 41), here (p. 49), and here (p. 43).

For a brief history of Cape May click here.

For facts and figures about Cape May click here.

Initial Network

The initial network is located in the boroughs of Avalon and Stone Harbor. They are populated enough that it makes sense to build a network there and they both have ranked on the Forbes list of most expensive zip codes in the United States, so they would have the money needed to start up a network in the county. Avalon and Stone Harbor are also tourist areas in the summer, known for their nice beaches.


Stations: 22

Interchanges: 14

Guideway: 20.4 mi

Final Network

The final network covers Ocean City, Avalon, Stone Harbor, Woodbine, Cape May, the suburbs of Ocean City, and Lower Township. Other areas of the county did not make it into the final network because of their relatively low number of possible trips.

Stations: 204

Interchanges: 111

Guideway: 197.39 mi









67.84% of all possible trips in Cape May County were covered by this network. An average vehicle occupancy of 3 was assumed because most people go to the beach in groups, so there would be relatively less one-passenger trips. A fare of $3.00 per ride leads to an annual loss of $43 million. To break even, the fare would have to be raised to $4.00 per ride.


The stations with the most trips per day were mainly located on the coast near attractions such as popular restaurants and shops, amusement parks, and other recreational areas. There were 70 stations on the network that serviced less than 1000 trips a day, meaning they were at a loss. Ideally these would be removed from the network to increase profit, however they still add to the coverage of the county, which is already quite low.
This fare vs. profit graph has a very gradual slope because of the low number of stations and the low coverage rate.

Construction Plan Evolution

Ocean City

After the initial network in Avalon/Stone Harbor, the next phase would be Ocean City. Ocean City is the largest city in the county, with a population of 15,378 according to the 2000 census. The summer population can be as much as 130,000. The Ocean City beach is so popular that you need to purchase a beach tag to gain access during the summer months.



Wildwood Area

This network covers Wildwood Crest, Wildwood, and North Wildwood. It has a summer population of over 250,000 and has very nice beaches as well. Wildwood also contains Morey's Piers amusement complex and the Raging Waters and Ocean Oasis water parks which attract thousands of visitors a day during the summer season. This network is just south of the Avalon/Stone Harbor network, so they would be connected.

After Wildwood

There are two areas at the southern tip of the county in Cape May that are tourist hot spots. Small networks would be built there after Wildwood. Later, a network in Sea Isle City would be built. It beaches attract many tourists, plus having a network there would connect the Ocean City and Avalon/Stone Harbor networks. The suburbs of Ocean City and Lower Township would be added last, as they don’t have as many tourists, but are still quite densely populated.

Summer Statistics



Since at the moment, the network is losing money, the possibility of only running the system during the summer was examined. All school trips were eliminated, and transit trips were multiplied by 3 and recreational and PT trips were multiplied by 4. A real summer network would probably involve removing all non-tourist areas from the network, which would probably result in more profit, but these just some rough figures.









With a fare of $3.00, the network would generate $13 million a year. The break even price is $2.80.

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