Promoting Reduction in Travel Demand in Transport Sector of Asian Cities: Case of Bangkok, Thailand

Chapter IV.2
Discussion Paper

Cities in Asian developing countries are generally characterized by a relatively high density, low levels of motorization, relatively high public transport and bicycle usage, high density corridor orientations radiating from the city centre, and generally mixed land uses (SUTP, 2003). This statement brings into two situations; first, with respect to optimistic viewpoint, this situation provides a potential basis for sustainable urban development. Second, in a pessimistic viewpoint, it is believed that a low level of motorization in developing countries is a sign of contraction in development process rather than purposely controlled. This statement may also be misleading since cities in South-east Asian countries such as Bangkok, Jakarta and Manila show characteristics that are different from above description. However, the statements perhaps true for some cities in Asian developing countries.

Reduction in travel demand in transportation sector is one of the demand management interventions toward sustainable transport. Sustainable transport is a buzz phrase, which was coined in the late 20th century followings the definition of sustainable development proposed by Bruntland Commission in 1987, to describe all forms of transport which minimize emissions of carbon dioxide and other pollutants. Sustainable transport can mean public transport, car sharing, walking and cycling as well as technology such as electric and hybrid cars. The reduction of travel demand that minimizes traffic volume can also contribute to sustainable transport. This report attempts to discuss the reduction of travel demand by means of various possible interventions which are presently being undertaken as well as planned for making the city of Bangkok, a sustainable city.

Ranjith Perera
Ariva Sugandi Permana
Wanpen Charoentrakulpeeti