Title

SHOPPING TRAVEL BEHAVIORS IN AN ERA OF RAPID ECONOMIC TRANSITION: EVIDENCE FROM NEWLY BUILT MALLS IN PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2004

Subject Area

operations - frequency, planning - surveys

Keywords

Trip frequency, Travel behavior, Surveys, Shopping duration, Shopping centres, Shopping centers, Shopping, Prague (Czech Republic), Mode share, Modal split, Malls, Land use, Demographics, Before and after studies

Abstract

The rapid transformation in both the location and type of retail provision in the Prague metropolitan area, Czech Republic, between 1997 and 2001 offers a unique opportunity for examining the relationship between land use and shopping travel behavior. The case of Prague is unique. Although the Czech capital has the compact form and transit-rich environment sought by many planners, after rates of motorization rose steadily in the early 1990s foreign developers began constructing shopping malls on the city's fringe in 1997. Although retail provision was being remade on highway-adjacent locations outside the traditional central business district, there were few changes in Prague residential and employment locations. Thus, the shift in shopping land use occurred in relative isolation. Shopping travel behavior before and after the introduction of the fringe shopping malls is examined by using research based on 1,649 surveys collected in four new malls in 2001. Mall visitors reported current demographic information and mall travel behavior as well as their travel habits for the same trip purposes before the introduction of the surveyed mall. The before-and-after data demonstrate how shopping travel behavior has changed with the changing retail land uses. Specifically, shifts in three travel behavior variables (trip frequency, shopping duration, and mode split) disaggregated by key demographic characteristics (age, gender, income, car ownership, and household size), are analyzed. Several striking shifts are apparent: people shop less often and for longer periods of time and are less likely to walk to shopping locations.