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Friday, March 21 • 3:30pm - 4:00pm
FR-PS14 [POSTER] Ticket to Ride: Access to Public Transportation and Improved Livelihoods in Bogota, Colombia [SPECIAL TRACK: URBAN ISSUES IN CENTRAL AND SOUTH AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN]

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There is a growing consensus that transit systems can be an effective means to address poverty alleviation and should target it as a goal. Literature suggests that the urban poor benefit disproportionately to benefits in public transportation relative to middle- or upper-class city residents. Still, little is known about the specific extents to which transit access correlates to poverty and poverty improvements. This paper tests the relationship between transit systems and poverty alleviation through looking at the case of Bogota, Colombia’s Transmilenio system. The Transmilenio is the city’s much-lauded bus rapid transit (BRT) system. When it was developed, the Transmilenio signified an emphatic policy turn toward prioritizing public transportation over expanding the highway system, which predominantly served the car-owning middle and upper classes. To what extent has access to the Transmilenio improved the well-being of the urban poor in Bogota? This paper analyzes the relation between expansions in transit access and changes in poverty rates over time. Using geostatistical analysis (GIS) to compare distance from the transit network with income and transit-use data over time, this research contributes a quantitative analysis which substantiates existing literature on the effectiveness of the Transmilenio as a transit system in relation to poverty. The research contributes a granular and quantitative analysis, as well as temporal analysis of the data (based on the first two stages of the Transmilenio project, from 2000-2011) to substantiate the case that the Transmilenio is, in fact, a significant contributor to poverty alleviation over time in Bogota.


Kate Brunette

Partnerships and Campaign Coordinator, Code.org
Community organizer with Housing Now Seattle, advocating for affordable housing solutions. Talk to me about: equity, inclusive planning, sustainability, civic tech

avatar for Eve Bratman

Eve Bratman

Assistant Professor, American University, School of International Service
American University

Friday March 21, 2014 3:30pm - 4:00pm CDT
Navarro Ballroom (Westin 2nd Floor)