Transit justice as spatial justice: learning from activists


Theresa Enright

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, place - urban, policy - equity, mode - mass transit


Mass urban transit, transport justice, spatial justice, black lives matter, Toronto, San Francisco, free transit


The provision of mass urban transit is frequently tied to agendas of social justice and equity. Yet there are persistent challenges to locating justice within urban mobility regimes. Drawing on two cases of transit activism – Free Transit Toronto and Black Lives Matter in the San Francisco Bay Area – this paper identifies three limitations to transport justice scholarship and practice, namely the theorization of mobility, space, and justice. These activist struggles demonstrate that justice cannot be adequately defined through an abstract accounting of how harms and benefits are distributed, but also concerns the contextual and conflictual processes of producing space and subjects.


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