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476660-00048-1 Report Abstract

An Evaluation of the Effects of Transit Oriented Development in a Suburban Environment

Krystal M. Lastrape and Carol A. Lewis, Texas Southern University, October 2010, 63 pp. (476660-00048-1)

Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) refers to dense, pedestrian-friendly, livable communities that have good transit as a nucleus.  While transit facilities are missing in most suburban towns and the residents are heavily dependent on their vehicles, it is wondered whether residents would take advantage if public facilities were available.  This paper presents information about some vital aspects of TOD when viewed in suburban communities.  The residents in three Houston area suburban communities were studied as to whether they use public transit for work trips via:  (1) light rail (2) commuter bus and (3) express bus.  The comparisons of the three work trip modes and the use of personal automobiles indicate that were transit facilities more available in their community, transit systems would be an effective approach to absorb some growth in trips.  One goal of TOD encourages people to work near home as a way to reduce sprawl and decrease congestion.  A job to housing balance is also assessed.  Creation of better jobs to housing balance would further improve the number of internal trips reducing the use of single-occupancy vehicles.   Enhancements to the convenience of transit, bicycling and walking encourage livable communities by providing safe, convenient and engaging experiences for pedestrians.

Keywords: Suburban Transit Oriented Development, Town Centers, Suburban Mixed Use

ENTIRE REPORT (Adobe Acrobat File – 9.7 MB)