Transportation diversity refers to the quantity and quality of transportation options available in a particular situation. Many transport options are considered, including various travel modes, substitutes for physical travel, and land use strategies that improve access. Transportation diversity (also called options, choice and multi-modalism) refers to the quantity and quality of transport options available in a particular situation. Because travel demands are diverse (users differ in their needs and preferences), transport efficiency and equity tend to increase with system diversity, which allows travelers to choose the best option for each trip. As a result, a more diverse transport system tends to increase transport system efficiency by allowing users to choose the most cost effective option for each trip.
Transport diversity supports other transport policy reforms, such as transport pricing. It describes various benefits to users and society from increased transport system diversity, barriers to increased transport diversity, methods for quantifying the benefits of specific transport options, examples of transport diversity analysis, and ways to increase transport system diversity. Transportation is provided by an integrated system, so transportation diversity should be evaluated at a network level. Automobile-oriented transportation systems tend to provide inferior transport options for non-drivers. Households in communities with good transport options spend thousands of rupees a year less on Transportation than households in Automobile dependent communities.
In many communities households searching for a home to rent or purchase must choose between living in an Automobile-dependent suburb with good schools and public services, or neighborhood with better transportation options but inferior schools and services. They often lack the option of having goods community services with good Transportation diversity. Conventional transportation planning tends to undervalue many benefits of transport diversity because they tend to be difficult to measure and accrue to less powerful members of society. Planning that focuses on specific transport problems, such as traffic and parking congestion, pollution or crashes, tends to give little weight to other benefits associated with improved transport options. For example, in most communities, integrating cycling and transit transport by installing bike racks on buses and providing bike storage and rental services at transit stations would only serve a tiny portion of total personal travel needs, and only directly benefit a small portion of the population, mostly young and lower-income people. This type of initiative has been taken by Delhi Metro.
Some people feel that they contradict the egalitarian tradition of transport service (all users should bear congestion and poor transit service discomfort equally). Evaluating transport in terms of access allows the widest range of solutions to be considered for addressing Transportation problems. Transportation disadvantaged refers to people who have significant unmet transportation needs. For example, a non driver may have adequate transportation options if they are physically able, live in a community with good walking and transit services, and can afford taxi and delivery services when necessary. For example, when evaluating solutions to a transportation problem such as traffic congestion, decision-makers may favour those that increase transportation options, and be willing to pay up to a certain amount extra for diversity-improving options.
Examples include: Planners can identify individual solutions to these transportation problems, such as establishing a special mobility service, contracting with existing mobility service providers to provide additional trips, changing scheduled transit service to accommodate such needs, or subsidizing taxi service. Taxi demand is affected by the size of transportation disadvantaged population in an area, the portion of trips by transportation disadvantaged people that cannot be met by other modes and the number of visitors who arrive in an area without a car. Taxi service is an important transportation option for many people who are transportation disadvantaged. In many communities, Delhi transport bus service is infrequent, connections are difficult, terminals are inconveniently located and unattractive, support services are minimal, buses are sometimes unpleasant (the poor quality of interregional bus service is striking compared with the service quality. Performance indicators include: interregional bus and train service is an important transportation options for non drivers, particularly for short- and medium-distance trips, and to destinations not served by commercial air service.
Many transportation disadvantaged people are motorists, including people with physical disabilities and low incomes, although age restrictions, the physical requirements of driving, and the financial costs of owning and operating an Automobile limits many people's ability to drive. Various management and pricing options, such as those listed below, can improve transportation options for motorists: Conventional transportation demand models used in most communities provide information on Automobile travel demand. Various types of delivery services have different performance standards related to what can be carried, delivery speed, cost, etc. Delivery services can benefit most transportation disadvantaged people, support telework (working at home), and substitute for some non-work travel. Various transportation management strategies can improve transport diversity. Some transportation management strategies have mixed impacts on transportation diversity.
A variety of land use factors affect access and transport diversity. Another approach for evaluating the quality of Transportation diversity is to survey users (residents, commuters and visitors to an area) concerning the quality of transportation they experience, with special attention to comparing differences in mobility, costs and satisfaction between motorists (people who can driver and afford an Automobile) and people who are transportation disadvantaged.
Transportation diversity refers to the quantity and quality of transportation options available to an individual or group, taking into account their needs and abilities. Increased options can help solve many specific transport problems, and tends to create a more efficient, equitable and robust transportation system. Because transport and land use are interrelated, transport diversity can also include land use and location options, such as the ability to afford living in a more accessible, less automobile-dependent neighborhood. In order to evaluate transportation diversity it is useful to prioritize trips, recognizing that some types of Transportation, called basic access, provide particularly high value to society. In general, most Transportation and land use systems do a good job of accommodating automobile transportation.
Improving transport diversity involves improving alternatives to automobile transport, creating more accessible land use options, and providing new options for motorists, such as car sharing. This paper describes a more comprehensive range of Transportation diversity objectives and solutions, and describes several methods for evaluating transportation options. Some methods focus on particular transportation problems, others on particular transportation modes, and others focus on the transportation planning process. Twenty-five specific transportation options are considered, including mobility modes, substitutes for physical travel, and land use strategies that improve access. An optimal transport system would probably be more diverse, with better transport options and less automobile use.
Shashikant Nishant Sharma
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