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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/26511

Title: Beyond the Work Trip: Teen Travel in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and Policy Implications
Authors: Marzoughi, Reihane
Advisor: Vanderburg, Willem H.
Department: Civil Engineering
Keywords: travel behaviour
urban form
public transit
teenagers
Issue Date: 16-Mar-2011
Abstract: Conventional transportation demand management approaches have had limited success in reducing automobile dependency. As a result, it has become increasingly important to understand the decision-making processes involved in determining travel behaviour. The purpose of this dissertation is to extend research on urban form and travel behaviour beyond adult travel by examining teen travelers aged 13-19 in the Greater Toronto Area. Data from the Transportation Tomorrow Survey (TTS) survey are used to study four main research questions: 1) How has teen mode choice changed from 1986 to 2006? 2) How do these choices vary as teens transition from the 13-15 age group to being of driving age (16-19)? 3) How do these choices vary across the different urban and suburban regions of the GTA? 4) What are some of the differences between teen travel and adult travel? The issue is further probed through the collection of quantitative and qualitative travel data from first year students at the University of Toronto, and a series of focus groups held in locations in the GTA. The first year survey explores attitudes towards different modes in relation to the locational attributes of the respondent‘s hometown neighbourhood. The focus group sessions involve interviews with 26 teen and a take-home parental questionnaire. Results show that across the GTA, active transportation has decreased while auto passenger mode shares have increased. Younger teens walk more and older teens take transit more for both school and discretionary travel. Jurisdictions with better transit supply and orientation have higher transit mode shares for school trips, but discretionary trips have low transit mode shares. Walk mode shares for both school and discretionary travel are similar across all jurisdictions, regardless of whether they are urban or suburban. Additionally, the survey participants' narratives illustrate that the desire to travel actively and independently is strong. However, the reality of the final travel choice is determined by the presence of supportive infrastructure that facilitates active mode choices while shaping perceptions and attitudes formed as a result of daily travel experiences. Findings illustrate the relevance of qualitative work in advancing transportation research--particularly in understanding human travel decisions.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/26511
Appears in Collections:Doctoral

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