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Measuring the accessibility and spatial equity of urban services under competition using the cumulative opportunities measure

Keone Kelobonye, Heng Zhou, Gary McCarney and Xia, Jianhong (Cecilia)

Journal of Transport Geography, 2020, vol. 85, issue C

Abstract: As accessibility becomes an increasingly relevant concept in the analysis of sustainable transport and urban development, the accuracy of accessibility measures becomes increasingly vital. While more complex measures are gradually gaining popularity with increasing data and computational resources, policy makers and planners are still prone to opt for less complex methods that are easy to use and interpret. The cumulative opportunities measure is the most widely applied accessibility measure in planning practice, but it is also among the least accurate due to its lack of consideration of the impact of competition for those opportunities. This study seeks to highlight the impact of addressing competition for different urban services in the cumulative opportunities measure. A competition component is added to the measure, which is applied to a case study of three types of urban services in the Perth metropolitan area; jobs, primary/secondary education and shopping. The results show that considering competition changes the spatial patterns of accessibility and its equity. Since this approach reveals demand-supply imbalances, it can more accurately determine spatial inequalities in accessibility, and hence increases the utility of the cumulative opportunities measure. We also find that the three services had varying levels and spatial patterns of accessibility and spatial equity, thus relying on any single one of them for assessing spatial structural performance can be misleading.

Keywords: Accessibility; Cumulative opportunities; Competition; Education accessibility; Job accessibility; Spatial equity (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2020.102706

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