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Teen travel in the Greater Toronto Area: A descriptive analysis of trends from 1986 to 2006 and the policy implications


  • Marzoughi, Reihane


This paper extends research on urban form and travel behavior 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? Results show that in general, active transportation has decreased, while auto-passenger mode shares have increased across the region. The younger group walks more and the older group takes 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 very 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. In contrast to adult travel in the GTA, built form characteristics and transit supply do not appear to have a direct relationship with teen mode choice. Urban form appears to exert an indirect influence on teen travel.

Suggested Citation

  • Marzoughi, Reihane, 2011. "Teen travel in the Greater Toronto Area: A descriptive analysis of trends from 1986 to 2006 and the policy implications," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 623-630, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:trapol:v:18:y:2011:i:4:p:623-630

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. D Damm & S R Lerman, 1981. "A Theory of Activity Scheduling Behavior," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 13(6), pages 703-718, June.
    2. Schwanen, Tim & Mokhtarian, Patricia L., 2005. "What if You Live in the Wrong Neighborhood? The Impact of Residential Neighborhood Type Dissonance on Distance Traveled," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt5hh713d6, University of California Transportation Center.
    3. Patricia L. Mokhtarian & Michael N. Bagley, 2002. "The impact of residential neighborhood type on travel behavior: A structural equations modeling approach," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 36(2), pages 279-297.
    4. McMillan, Tracy E., 2007. "The relative influence of urban form on a child's travel mode to school," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 69-79, January.
    5. D Damm & S R Lerman, 1981. "A theory of activity scheduling behavior," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 13(6), pages 703-718, June.
    6. Tal, Gil & Handy, Susan L, 2008. "Children’s Biking for Nonschool Purposes: Getting to Soccer Games in Davis, California," Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series qt8rz0h5ck, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis.
    7. Bhat, Chandra R., 1998. "A model of post home-arrival activity participation behavior," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 387-400, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Buckley, Aaron & Lowry, Michael B. & Brown, Helen & Barton, Benjamin, 2013. "Evaluating safe routes to school events that designate days for walking and bicycling," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 294-300.


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