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Measuring the transportation needs of people with developmental disability


  • Rania Wasfi
  • Ahmed El-Geneidy
  • David Levinson

    () (Nexus (Networks, Economics, and Urban Systems) Research Group, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Minnesota)


The US Department of Health and Human Services Administration on Development Disabilities estimates the number of people diagnosed with a developmental disability in the United States as 4.5 million persons, which would translate to about 17,000 residents of Hennepin County, Minnesota. This research paper examines the transportation needs of adults with developmental disabilities either residing or working in Hennepin County through a survey of their existing travel behavior and their unmet transportation needs. The survey had both demographic and attitude questions as well as a travel diary to record both actual and desired but untaken trips. In this paper we report and discuss the main findings of the survey. It was clear from observing the returned sample that almost the entire surveyed population does not live independently. More than half of the surveyed population worked every day, while recreation occurred at least once a week for about two-thirds of the population, and more than half undertook social trips weekly. About 30% reported being unable to make trips they want to make and 46% unable to make trips they need to make. Public transit poses difficulties for this population both physically and intellectually. There were also specific complaints about the lack of transit service in addition to concerns regarding paratransit services. Community service providers received praise.

Suggested Citation

  • Rania Wasfi & Ahmed El-Geneidy & David Levinson, 2007. "Measuring the transportation needs of people with developmental disability," Working Papers 000008, University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:nex:wpaper:disability

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Metz, D. H., 2000. "Mobility of older people and their quality of life," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 7(2), pages 149-152, April.
    2. S L Handy & D A Niemeier, 1997. "Measuring accessibility: an exploration of issues and alternatives," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 29(7), pages 1175-1194, July.
    3. Golledge, Reginald G. & Costanzo, C. Michael & Marston, James R., 1996. "The Mass Transit Needs Of A Non-driving Disabled Population," Institute of Transportation Studies, Research Reports, Working Papers, Proceedings qt5rk1121g, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Berkeley.
    4. S L Handy & D A Niemeier, 1997. "Measuring Accessibility: An Exploration of Issues and Alternatives," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 29(7), pages 1175-1194, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Houshmand E. Masoumi & Wolfgang Fastenmeier, 2016. "Perceptions of security in public transport systems of Germany: prospects for future research," Journal of Transportation Security, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 105-116, June.

    More about this item


    Developmental disability; disadvantaged population; disability; transportation needs; Transportation Disadvantaged; Equity; Distribution; Minnesota;

    JEL classification:

    • R40 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - General
    • D30 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - General

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