I used the term “multi-modal” as a way of discussing public transit. Aside from ownership questions (subsidized? Owned by government or private or both?), I expect that we will see increased automation in vehicles in all sizes and types (buses, trains, ferries, etc). I see it like the way that routing algorithms that companies like Cisco use to route IP traffic. Some “routes” are more expensive, some are more reliable, some accept more passengers (packets) and so forth.
Many of the high costs you describe are likely to be engineered out (fewer people to employ). There are many, many social and economic implications to explore here.
Thanks for your comment! Very important topic!