IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Urbanization and urban transport in India: the search for a policy


  • Padam, Sudarsanam
  • Singh, Sanjay Kumar


Urban population in India has increased significantly from 62 million in 1951 to 285 million in 2001 and is estimated to be around 540 million by the year 2021. In terms of percentage of total population, the urban population has gone up from 17% in 1951 to 29% in 2001 and is expected to increase up to around 37% by the year 2021. Consequently, the number and size of cities have also increased significantly. Although circumstances differ considerably across cities in India, certain basic trends which determine transport demand (such as substantial increase in urban population, household incomes, and industrial and commercial activities) are the same. These changes have placed heavy demands on urban transport systems, demand that many Indian cities have been unable to meet. This paper attempts to highlight the need for a cogent urban transport policy without which there will be ad hoc interventions. Such interventions, apart from not adding up to a comprehensive approach, will result in greater confusion. Furthermore, it emphasizes that if there is no worthwhile public transport, it will still need to be reinvented to promote a better quality of life. The need of the hour is formulation of an urban transport strategy that is both pragmatic and holistic in its approach.

Suggested Citation

  • Padam, Sudarsanam & Singh, Sanjay Kumar, 2004. "Urbanization and urban transport in India: the search for a policy," European Transport \ Trasporti Europei, ISTIEE, Institute for the Study of Transport within the European Economic Integration, issue 27, pages 26-44.
  • Handle: RePEc:sot:journl:y:2004:i:27:p:26-44

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gregory K. Ingram, 1998. "Patterns of Metropolitan Development: What Have We Learned?," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 35(7), pages 1019-1035, June.
    2. Small, Kenneth A & Song, Shunfeng, 1992. ""Wasteful" Commuting: A Resolution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 888-898, August.
    3. Ramanathan, R., 1998. "Development of Indian passenger transport," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 23(5), pages 429-430.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Baidya, S. & Borken-Kleefeld, J., 2009. "Atmospheric emissions from road transportation in India," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(10), pages 3812-3822, October.
    2. Singh, Sanjay Kumar, 2012. "Urban transport in India: issues, challenges, and the way forward," European Transport \ Trasporti Europei, ISTIEE, Institute for the Study of Transport within the European Economic Integration, issue 52, pages 1-9.
    3. Enoch, Marcus P. & Warren, James P., 2008. "Automobile use within selected island states," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 42(9), pages 1208-1219, November.
    4. Pucher, John & Korattyswaropam, Nisha & Mittal, Neha & Ittyerah, Neenu, 2005. "Urban transport crisis in India," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 185-198, May.
    5. Malayath, Manoj & Verma, Ashish, 2013. "Activity based travel demand models as a tool for evaluating sustainable transportation policies," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 45-66.
    6. SINGH Sanjay, 2016. "Assessment Of Passenger Satisfaction With Public Bus Transport Services: A Case Study Of Lucknow City (India)," Studies in Business and Economics, Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, Faculty of Economic Sciences, vol. 11(3), pages 107-128, December.

    More about this item


    Urbanization; Urban Transport Policy;


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sot:journl:y:2004:i:27:p:26-44. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Romeo Danielis). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.