Does the improvement of pedestrian facilities increase willingness to walk? the case of Bandung, Indonesia

Event: The 97th Annual Meeting Transportation Research Board (TRB)
Date: 7-11 January 2018, Washington DC
Conference Paper

Pedestrianization programs hold promise to encourage non-motorized transport (NMT) in rapidly motorizing cities. But successful implementation of these programs depends on whether they meet the needs of urban residents. This article aims to assess how Bandung, Indonesia—a fast-growing city of 2.3 million people—is meeting those needs with a pedestrianization program called “Panca Trotoar.” “Panca Trotoar” is a program that Bandung is gradually implementing to provide citizens with safer, cleaner, and more visually appealing walking environments. The article employs two methods to analyze the program’s impact. First, it draws upon responses to face-to-face interviews and analytical hierarchy process (AHP) to rank possible barriers to walking. The results of the AHP reveal that safety and security rank highest among six potentially influential factors (the other factors were feasibility, accessibility (time spent walking), comfort and pleasure). This result contrasts studies in other cities that suggest feasibility and accessibility rank highest in decisions to walk. The article then employs an ordered logit model to quantitatively assess how improvements to the pedestrian environments influence willingness to walk longer distances for samples of walkers and non-walkers. The logit model shows that older and more educated respondents were willing to walk further, while respondents who walk shorter distances were unlikely to change that behaviour. The model also highlights notable interactions between some variables, for instance, illustrating that female vehicle owners were less inclined to walk further even with improvements to the pedestrian environment. The analysis could prove helpful to Bandung as it continues to tailor “Panca Trotoar” to resident needs as well as other rapidly motorizing cities considering similar NMT programs.

Russ Bona