Spatial disparity in transport social needs and public transport provision in Santiago de Cali (Colombia)

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - bus rapid transit, place - south america, organisation - regulation, policy - social exclusion


Transport disadvantage, Transport social needs, Public transport provision, Social exclusion, Accessibility, Latin America


The public transport system of Santiago de Cali (Colombia) experienced several deficiencies in the last decade. Although it was used by about 70% of the population and included 30 private operators of collective transport, who offered services for 233 routes utilising a variety of different vehicles, regulation was limited and often did not cover routes, stops, and frequencies. In 2009, the “Masivo Integrado de Occidente” (MIO), a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system came into operation, as a cost-effective transport alternative for urban mobility. This article examines the relationship between social exclusion and transport in Santiago de Cali and demonstrates that there is still room for improvement in aspects of spatial coverage and for a greater focus on the factors which explain the social need for transport which are not usually considered within planning. To this end, the theoretical framework for accessibility, social exclusion and provision of public transport is set out and the subject area of study is described. Later in the article an index of social transport needs is drawn up and another index, demonstrating the provision of public transport is presented in such a way as to highlight the difference between the two, expressing the spatial gap between need and supply. The results indicate that the BRT system can improve its services by implementing specific measures which take into account the socio-economic factors that largely explain the social transport needs of Santiago de Cali.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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