A dynamic measurement of the links between public transport, urban sprawl and vehicle ownership: Lyon in the period 1976 - 1995


P Bonnel

Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Subject Area

infrastructure - vehicle, land use - urban sprawl, place - urban


At a time when many conurbations in Europe are attempting to reduce or contain the role of the car in urban areas on environmental or economic grounds, this paper aims to evaluate, in quantitative terms, the way a number of important trends affect modal split between public transport and the car. We shall therefore examine the effect of urban sprawl and the increase in motor vehicle ownership on the market share of public transport and the passenger car. In each of the last two decades in the Lyon conurbation, changes in location explain a 6 to 9% fall in public transport market share while the increase in vehicle ownership (in the context of a stable origin-destination trip matrix) has resulted in a more moderate fall of between 1 and 4%. This quantification can inform decision-makers about probable changes in the market share of public transport and the importance of certain factors in these changes. It makes it possible to construct more realistic modal split scenarios and assess the scale of the effort that is required just to maintain the car in its present position.


Permission to publish abstract given by AET.