This paper by Professor Graham Currie of the Institute of Transport Studies at Monash University examines the relative merits of light rail and bus systems.
Given the large investment that any transit requires, it is important that the mode that is chosen (for example, for Sydney) is the one that most people will prefer to use.
Studies have shown that users prefer transit that has rail–like qualities. This paper discusses the reasons for that and whether light rail can actually satisfy the expectations that users have of it.
The paper discusses some of the issues that detract from rail performance and makes recommendations on factors that will influence this.