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Evaluating the equity implications of ridehailing through a multi-modal accessibility framework

Bilal Abdelwahab, Matthew Palm, Amer Shalaby and Steven Farber

Journal of Transport Geography, 2021, vol. 95, issue C

Abstract: In rapidly-growing metropolitan regions, it is crucial that transportation-related policies and infrastructure are designed to ensure that everyone can participate equitably in economic, social, and civil opportunities. Ridehailing services are touted to improve mobility options, but there is scant research that incorporates this mode within an accessibility framework. This paper employs a generalized cost measure in a multi-modal accessibility framework, namely Access Profile Analysis, to assess the role of ridehailing in providing job access to historically under-resourced parts of Toronto, Canada, referred to by the city as Neighborhood Improvement Areas (NIAs). Ridehailing is analyzed both as a mode of commute and as a feeder to the transit network (a first-mile solution). The results indicate that there are two main determinants of the extent to which ridehailing provides additional accessibility over transit: the transit level of service at the origin zone and the zone's proximity to employment opportunities. The ridehailing mode is shown to increase accessibility especially to closer destinations (jobs), with the highest improvement seen in the city's inner suburbs. On the other hand, integrating ridehailing with public transit does little to improve access to jobs. Compared to the rest of the city, NIAs experience a higher accessibility improvement from ridehailing alone, but not from its integration with transit. Nonetheless, job accessibility remains lower in NIAs than in other areas – even after the introduction of ridehailing.

Keywords: Accessibility; Ridehailing; Equity analysis; First/last mile; Transportation equity (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2021.103147

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jotrge:v:95:y:2021:i:c:s0966692321002003