Authors: Lorea Mendiola, Pilar González
Abstract: This study provides empirical evidence on the links between urban development factors and the use of specific modes of transport in commuting in the Buenos Aires metropolitan area. The case study is of interest because quantitative research on developing countries is scarce and their rapid urban growth and high rates of inequality may generate different results compared to the US or Europe. This relationship was assessed on locality level using regression methods. Spatial econometric techniques were applied to avoid unreliable inferences generated by spatial dependence and to detect the existence of externalities. Furthermore, we include in the model the socio-economic profile of each locality identified using cluster analysis. The findings reveal that population density affects motorised transport, that diversity is relevant for public transport and nonmotorised trips, and urban design characteristics affect all modes of transport. Spatial dependence is detected for motorised transport, which may imply the existence of externalities, suggesting the need for coordinated decision-making processes on a metropolitan level. Finally, modal split depends on the socio-economic profile of a locality, which may influence the response to public transport policies. To sum up, these results may be useful when it comes to helping policymakers design integrated public policies on urban and transport planning.
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