Temporal and Social Dimensions of Accessibility for New York City Residents

Accessibility, defined as the potential to reach opportunity sites, is being used mostly as a place-based measure. Placed-based accessibility implicitly assumes that accessibility to opportunities is a function of places, not individuals. The exclusion of individuals in calculating accessibility is unrealistic because individuals facing different time constraints will have varying levels of accessibility to opportunities, even though they reside in the same place. Females' accessibility might be different from males, because the time constraints they face are different. Therefore, accessibility is a function of places and individuals. The inclusion of individuals in accessibility suggests that there is a temporal and social dimension of accessibility. Differences in time constraints can lead to differences in accessibility, which will then lead to varying levels of accessibility for various social groups. Understanding in the temporal and social dimension of accessibility is important, because if the deficiency in one's accessibility is related to his or her temporal and social characteristics, the recent movement in changing the built environment in order to improve accessibility would be ineffective. The temporal and social dimension of accessibility also relates to the social equity aspect in the transportation planning process. Currently, although social equity is stated as one of the goals in the planning process, it is largely ignored in the actual process. At times, such omission can be challenged in court. The lawsuit filed by transit riders' group in Los Angeles (LA) against LA Metropolitan Transportation Authority in the 1990s was an example. Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) in this country would benefit if a simple individual and place based accessibility measure can be developed to allow them understand the social aspect of accessibility.


  • English


  • Status: Terminated
  • Funding: $5375.00
  • Contract Numbers:

    RF 49777-13-18

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    University Transportation Research Center

    City College of New York
    Marshak Hall, Suite 910, 160 Convent Avenue
    New York, NY  United States  10031
  • Project Managers:

    Goldman, Todd

    Kamga, Camille

  • Performing Organizations:

    City College of New York

    Civil Engineering, Steinman T-127
    140th Street and Convent Avenue
    New York, NY  United States  10031
  • Principal Investigators:

    Chen, Cynthia

  • Start Date: 20070101
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20080731
  • Source Data: RiP Project 14412

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01460269
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: University Transportation Research Center
  • Contract Numbers: RF 49777-13-18
  • Files: UTC, RiP
  • Created Date: Jan 3 2013 1:21PM