A commuting model for the analysis of the impacts of a tramway project: application to the Lens area

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe, place - urban, mode - tram/light rail, ridership - commuting, ridership - mode choice, ridership - modelling, economics - subsidy, policy - congestion, technology - emissions, planning - environmental impact


Commuting modelling, congestion, tramway, transport policy, pollutant emission, modal choice


Road congestion is not only an issue for major European urban agglomerations, but also for smaller ones. It is also the case of the Lens urban area, where car use is much higher than the average for medium-sized urban agglomerations in France. Local authorities put forward tramway projects to deal with the strongly negative externalities of congestion: travel time losses and pollution. To analyse its medium-term impact, we have developed a commuting with congestion model, inspired by the four-step traditional model, but with data made available from an origin–destination matrix. The results are encouraging but insufficient, and it is necessary to adopt supplementary measures in order to retrieve and justify the sizeable investments needed. Some measures prove to be very efficient, such as parking fees and urban tolls. Other measures, such as the subsidization of public transport, are partially efficient since they have an impact mainly on intra-urban commutes.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Taylor&Francis, copyright remains with them.