Identifying latent demand for transit-oriented development neighbourhoods: Evidence from a mid-sized urban area in Canada

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, place - urban, mode - tram/light rail, land use - transit oriented development, planning - surveys


Transit-oriented development, Residential location choice, Residential dissonance, Residential preference, Latent class analysis


Many studies have provided strong evidence of residents' support for the characteristics of transit-oriented development (TOD) neighbourhoods, but few have explicitly investigated the question of whether these preferences translate into their actual choices. How many households are experiencing a state of residential mismatch between preferred and actual neighbourhoods? What trade-offs have they made in residential location choices? We draw on data from a 2017 residential location choice survey in Kitchener Waterloo (KW), Canada, and employ latent class analysis (LCA) to address these questions. The light-rail transit (LRT) corridor encompassing the area that is 800 m surrounding LRT stops is defined as the TOD area. This study finds empirical evidence of TOD preferences in mid-sized cities and further uncovers latent demand for TOD neighbourhoods during the LRT construction phase. 37% of respondents hold strong TOD preferences but purchased outside TOD areas. These households are primarily young families (aged 25–34) with children and represent a possible missing target in TOD housing supply in our study area. Our findings provide support for building more “missing middle” intensified family housing in TOD areas of mid-sized cities.


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


Journal of Transport Geography home Page: