Public Transit & Accessibility Who is Being Left Behind

Shelly, Ronnie
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This project investigates how well the Escambia County Area Transit in the Pensacola area of Northwest Florida serves people who cannot obtain access to an automobile. The relevance of the study area is that Pensacola is a typical U.S. city of about 50,000 people, and will allow for an easier and more accurate comparison to other U.S. cities. In particular, this project focuses on single woman head of households with children present, and does not have an automobile. The importance of this population is its low rate of car ownership and high rates of poverty. Phase I involved a review of the existing literature of mobility and public transportation systems, while phase II (the current phase) is the process of geospatially locating the target group using Census data from 2010 and different indicators associated with the target group. Creating maps of indicators such as car ownership, female headed households, and the land use type of properties will indicate likely clusters of the target population by laying the maps on top of each other to see where high concentrations overlap. The clusters will be measured against geospatial locations of necessary institutions, like food and daycare, along with the service locations, stop intervals, and interconnectivity of other necessary institutions. The hypothesis is that clusters of the target group on the periphery of the city and beyond will have a lower quality of life due spatial mismatch theory and inadequate access to bus stops and the bus route’s access to necessary institutions.