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An Accessibility Analysis of Bus Rapid Transit in Bogotá, D.C.

Completed 2018

Public transportation is an important driver of the economic and social development of a country. Public transport provides mobility for people to meet their needs, reaching goods and services, and can generate social, economic and environmental benefits in terms of reduction in pollution and congestion, and improving the economy. Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system is public transport mode that has been widely implemented worldwide in the last decade, especially in developing countries and in the Latin American region. Its success relies on the fact that it is a cost-effective urban transportation alternative, with lower construction and operation costs compared to rail transit systems. However, multimodal access to public transportation plays an important role in the efficiency and effectiveness of the system and social development. Spatial limitations to accessing transportation services can lead to social exclusion. The objective of this thesis is twofold: i) to identify the factors that affect travelers’ mode choice to access the BRT system (first mile trips) in Bogota, D.C. and ii) to identify the urban areas with disparity between transportation needs (demand) and infrastructure provision (supply). Transmilenio, the BRT system of Bogota, D.C., Colombia, was chosen as a case study.

A Multinomial Logit Model was estimated to identify the factors that affect first mile work trips to the BRT system in Bogota, D.C. including socio-demographic and travel-related factors, using the 2015 Household Travel Survey of Bogota, D.C. The findings suggest that distance is the most important attribute in first mile trip mode decisions; people are more likely to take feeder bus for short distances between 1 to 3 km, while the probability of using urban bus increases for longer distances trips. Furthermore, people with college education level are more likely to choose intercity bus and walking, while low-income population is more likely to reach transit stations by feeder buses. For the second objective, a spatial analysis was carried out using Geographical Information Systems (GIS). The findings show that peripheral areas of the city, especially the southern part, present relevant spatial gaps in the distribution of the opportunities, population in need and infrastructure provision. The results can provide guidance to transportation agencies to allocate resources in the areas with the highest disparity.

This document is the abstract from Laura Tatiana Rodríguez Bayona's undergraduate thesis, submitted at the National University of Colombia, based on work conducted while she was a visiting scholar in the STSRG at Purdue.