A Comprehensive Analysis of Multi-level Factors Affecting Individuals Walking to Transit Stations in the City of Los Angeles, California

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Xu, Junping
Walking; Stations; Built Environment; Demographics
thesis / dissertation description
To decrease auto use and encourage public transit usage, transit-oriented development has been growing in importance. However, a few existing studies have examined the travel modes to transit stations. This research addresses this gap of knowledge by examining multi-level factors, including socio-demographic factors of individuals, socioeconomic characteristics, built environment attributes, and safety factors influencing walking to transit stations in the city of Los Angeles, California. This study primarily relies on travel survey data from the Post-Census Regional Household Travel Survey conducted from 2001 to 2003 by the Southern California Association of Governments. In the first phase, this research uses bivariate linear regression models to examine the disparities of the built environment across the station areas. The results indicate that the street light density and sidewalk completeness are lower in neighborhoods with higher percentages of Blacks or Hispanics. The density of tree coverage is higher in neighborhoods with higher median household income. The second phase of this study employs four binary logistic regression models to predict the odds of walking to transit stations. The results indicate that the distance to transit stations and the availability of transit parking have significant negative impacts on the likelihood of walking to transit stations. Pedestrian amenities, such as street lights, tree shade, and sidewalk completeness increase the odds of walking to stations. Land use mixture is a positive factor for predicting walking to transit stations. The greater diversity of land uses increase the chances of walking to transit stations. In summary, for promotion of walking to transit stations, this study suggests the strategies, such as increasing sidewalk completeness, street light density, street tree density, and land use mixture. Decreasing the parking lots around stations would discourage driving to stations. Meanwhile, more public attention is necessary to improve the pedestrian facilities in the minority or poor neighborhoods.