A longitudinal analysis of travel demand and its determinants in the Greater Toronto-Hamilton Area
This study provides a unique long-term investigation of regional travel demand that addresses several gaps in the existing longitudinal literature. Firstly, it investigates the development of travel demand in terms of both vehicle kilometres travelled (VKT) and passenger kilometres travelled (PKT), based on actual demand, congestion and equilibrium distances, using road and multi-modal transit networks in the Greater Toronto-Hamilton Area (GTHA). Secondly, it identifies influential travel demand determinants after testing an extensive set of variables including longitudinal gravity-based transport accessibility measures. Thirdly, it investigates to what extent the determinants’ influence changes over time and various locations within the study area, providing new insights into the temporal and intra-regional variations of travel demand and its determinants. The findings show that VKT and PKT have grown in absolute and per trip terms, mainly due to substantial population growth, especially in the suburban areas. Whilst average potential travel times by transit have decreased, they are substantially longer than auto travel times. Furthermore, travel demand determinants vary significantly across space by degrees of urbanity, especially for VKT. The findings call for area- and population segment-specific land use and transportation policies across the GTHA.