Chris Cook

Research Title: Accessing Public Transport, A Comparative Study of Berlin and London

Director of Studies: Professor Peter White Second Supervisor: David Whibley Starting Date and Mode of Study: 2006 Part-Time

Thesis Synopsis

The study aims to investigate the market share of public transport and the passenger trip rates per head of population in each city, to analyse the explanatory factors behind the trends in both cities and identify possible transfers in good practice between them. Accessibility is defined as the physical access passengers have to their local public transport eg walking time to their nearest railway station/bus stop and once there how easy is it for them to reach their destination ie frequency of service, destinations served, direct services versus the need to change en route. Accessibility is one aspect which may help to explain some aggregate trends and differences in public transport ridership in Berlin and London.

Accessibility from a disabled traveller’s point of view forms a strong focus of the research eg level access to and from the vehicles, clear visual and audible information systems both at stations and on board the vehicles themselves; all of which help enhance the mobility and independence of disabled passengers with a broad spectrum of physical and/or sensory impairments. Some primary survey work is being conducted in Berlin with disabled passengers, to ascertain the precise difficulties they encounter when using public transport and how they typically overcome them.

The difference in fare levels for users is also examined eg cash single fares and multiple journey travel card and prepay smartcards, as opposed to free concessionary travel passes, which most disabled people typically hold.

Contact Details and Further Information

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