Mapping Universal Access Experiences for Public Transport in Latin America

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - south america, place - urban, planning - methods, planning - service quality, policy - disability


Disabilities, Public transport, accessibility


A new methodology for universal accessibility is proposed to identify barriers in public transport accessibility and travel experience. The methodology focuses on the travel experience of people with disabilities and people with temporary restrictions in physical mobility. The methodology not only focuses on aspects of the planning, design, and operation of public transport systems, but also emphasizes sensitive aspects of user experience, considering satisfaction and emotions. The methodology maps tavel experiences using ethnographic methods and provides a graphical depiction of the trip. This helps in identifying key elements for improving accessibility when planning, implementing, and operating public transport systems. The methodology has two parts: (i) traveling along and observing a complete and common trip of people with a permanent or temporary disability or mobility restrictions, and (ii) analyzing and observing the travel experience. The methodology was applied in Bogotá, Santiago de Chile, and Medellín. The results of the methodology allowed us to formulate policy recommendations to improve the transportation systems of these cities in the short, medium, and long term. The methodology is applicable to other transit systems.


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