The association between urban public transport infrastructure and social equity and spatial accessibility within the urban environment: An investigation of Tramlink in London

Cuthill, N., Cao, M., Liu, Y., Gao, X. and Zhang, Y. 2019. The association between urban public transport infrastructure and social equity and spatial accessibility within the urban environment: An investigation of Tramlink in London. Sustainability. 11 (5) 1229. doi:10.3390/su11051229

TitleThe association between urban public transport infrastructure and social equity and spatial accessibility within the urban environment: An investigation of Tramlink in London
TypeJournal article
AuthorsCuthill, N., Cao, M., Liu, Y., Gao, X. and Zhang, Y.
Abstract

The pursuit of sustainability has been at the forefront of contemporary planning initiatives. However, most recent research has focused on the environmental and economic aspects of developing sustainable urban environment, whilst largely neglecting the social aspects. Contemporary political thinking in the UK often disregards the potential of the urban infrastructure to improve social equity. The aim of this study was to analyse the impact of transport infrastructure on a variety of social measures, in an empirical and ideologically unbiased fashion, using both quantitative and qualitative methods. We selected “Tramlink” as a case study: a light-rail system in the London Borough of Croydon which began operation in 2000. We used quantitative methods, including advanced spatial statistics, to produce a more detailed analysis of social equity than has been previously published. This acknowledges that determining localised issues can produce more informed and effective policy interventions. Our results demonstrate that the physical properties of transport infrastructure and the non-physical attributes of society, in combination, help to create opportunities for individuals to succeed. We also find that in order to reduce the negative effects of austerity, public money could be more effectively spent if diverted to areas that are most in need which can be highlighted through localised investigations.

KeywordsTransport infrastructure investment
Urban transport
Social equity
Spatial accessibility
Geographically weighted regression
Urban environment
Light railway (Tramlink)
London
Article number1229
JournalSustainability
Journal citation11 (5)
ISSN2071-1050
Year2019
PublisherMDPI
Publisher's version
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.3390/su11051229
Web address (URL)https://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/11/5/1229
Publication dates
Published26 Feb 2019
LicenseCC BY 4.0

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