Does Transit Fare Impact Spatial Mismatch? A Case Study of Chicago Metropolitan Area

Authors: Dong Liu*, University of Illinois
Topics: Transportation Geography, United States
Keywords: transit fare, transit-accessible job, spatial mismatch, equity, affordability
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/3/2019
Start / End Time: 12:40 PM / 2:20 PM
Room: Coolidge, Marriott, Mezzanine Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Social equity, as a long-term development objective, has been integrated into urban transportation plans. Studies conducted in Europe and the United States found that the average household spending on transportation is between 15 and 25 percent of the total expenditures, making transportation the second largest expenditure category after housing. One of the primary objectives of transportation system is to provide equitable accessibility, especially for those belonging to the transport-disadvantaged group. Most of the existing research assessed transportation equity by measuring the accessibility of transit stations or transit-accessible jobs within a pre-defined travel time or distance threshold. However, other than time or distance, transit fare also embodies a major constraint on individual accessibility to socioeconomic opportunities. This study explores the impact of transport affordability on transit-accessible jobs and measures the spatial mismatch between transit-accessible jobs and population on a census-tract level. We first build an accessibility measure taking both travel time and transit fare into consideration. Then the number of transit-accessible jobs as well as socially vulnerable population in each census tract will be determined. Finally, we compare the results of the proposed index of dissimilarity using demographic data and transit-accessible jobs with the traditional index of dissimilarity using demographic data and all available jobs. The results show that this study provides a more comprehensive measure of spatial mismatch and can be easily communicated to planners and policy makers.

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