Title

CAR DEPENDENCE IN A PUBLIC TRANSPORT DOMINATED CITY: EVIDENCE FROM HONG KONG

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2003

Subject Area

planning - travel demand management, planning - travel demand management, planning - surveys, ridership - mode choice, ridership - demand, policy - sustainable, organisation - management, place - urban, mode - car

Keywords

Urban transportation, Trip reduction, Travel demand management, Travel behavior, Transportation demand management, TDM measures, Sustainable transportation, Surveys, Mode choice, Modal choice, Intracity transportation, Hong Kong (China), Choice of transportation, Case studies, Automobile use, Automobile usage, Automobile travel, Automobile ownership

Abstract

Although car ownership and use is very low in Hong Kong compared with other cities internationally, it has one of the highest vehicle densities in the world. To improve transport sustainability, reducing car traffic must remain a priority. This study determines why people own cars in Hong Kong, explores how dependent car owners are on their cars, and identifies the policy implications. Results of a survey of 401 car owners show that the main reasons for initial car purchase are to carry things and to save time. However, once a car has been acquired, owners become dependent on it for virtually all journey purposes despite the excellent quality of public transportation. In the case of Hong Kong, where most people have not yet become car-dependent, the opportunity exists to prevent car ownership from becoming the norm. If controlling car use is an objective of transportation policy, the best direct option is to not improve congestion, possibly by reducing road space allocated to car traffic while increasing road space allocated to buses.

Comments

Transportation Research Part D Home Page: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/13619209