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  • Author: Houshmand Masoumi x
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Abstract

The number of urban mobility studies and projects in the three large metropoles of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, Tehran, Istanbul, and Cairo, is growing while other large cities do not enjoy a large share. It would be efficient for those other large cities to adapt the experiences, projects, and studies of Tehran, Istanbul, and Cairo to their own contexts. This paper can help facilitate that adaptation. It investigates the transferability and generalisability of the findings of a recent publication by the lead author on mobility choices in Tehran, Istanbul, and Cairo to some other large cities of more than one million inhabitants in the MENA region. The discussion provided here can provide decision-makers in the MENA region with guidance on how to utilise the findings from a recent study on Tehran/Istanbul/Cairo in their own contexts. T-tests were conducted to test the comparability of the three base cities with a sample 57 others with populations of over one million people. The results show that it would be possible to adapt the urban mobility studies of the three base megacities to 3 to 27 cities based on different criteria. Key suggestions identified by this study include providing local accessibility, neighbourhood facilities, and cycling facilities as well as removing social and legal constraints to cycling, advertising cycling, informing people about the harm arising from the overuse of cars, and increasing street connectivity by adding intersections. According to the findings, these evidence-based recommendations can enhance sustainable mobility for the inhabitants of up to 27 large cities.

Abstract

Unlike other developing countries, the housing market in Egypt is characterized by densely populated urban areas in old cities and the peripheral urban agglomeration. In contrast, a high rate of vacancy along most of the new cities that have been established since the 1980s is seen. Regardless of such high rate of vacancies, still the variation in occupancy rates among those new cities is notable. Questions arising include: Does proximity to old cities or Greater Cairo affect the size of the population of the new cities? Is the size of the city or the year of establishment plays roles in attracting more inhabitants? The factors of spatial characteristics of new cities in Egypt remain questionable. This research aims to reveal the association between occupancy rate and six factors related to the spatial characteristics of new cities and their geographical locations, such as; current inhabitants, the estimated size of the target group, the size of new cities, total number of housing units, distance to nearby old city, and distance to Greater Cairo.

Abstract

Car-orientated modal splits represent problems for the city in economic, environmental and social terms. The implementation of policies and other measures can fail if the causes are not well recognized. Mid-sized cities in Mexico are not well-represented in studies where only the capital and other bigger cities are studied. This research aims to recognize those causes focusing on northern midsized cities in Mexico. The approach involves numerical work (linear regression) complemented with a descriptive analysis of the city. The analysis takes on such areas of consideration as socio-economic factors, land-use variables and the street network of the city. Of the 16 variables, almost all presented a relationship with car ownership levels, but not all behaved as expected. The final part of the research is a reaction to the previous studies and recommendations to change the city from car-orientated to one with a sustainable modal split.

Abstract

The achievement of sustainable transportation and the desire to reduce car ownership are important aspects of urban planning, especially in developing countries. This paper presents an overview of researches and studies conducted on car ownership to find the knowledge gap and neglected modelling methods that should be employed in the further researches in Iran as one of the Middle East countries. It is found that car ownership models have under gone modification and improvement from regression models towards discrete choice models, although more improvement is necessary and underway. Lack of reliable aggregate and disaggregate data regarding public transport, land use, behavioural and socioeconomic variables particularly for small cities is prominent. To fill the gap, more descriptive and analytical researches and more complex modelling methods and variables need be delved.

Abstract

The circumstances of the relations of jobs-housing balance and urban travel behavior are not clear in emerging and developing countries. There are limited reliable data suitable for testing the hypotheses regarding the associations of the neighborhood-level number of employment opportunities in these countries. This manuscript summarizes the results of an explorative survey undertaken in Lahore, Pakistan to support empirical analyses testing these hypotheses. The survey was undertaken in spring 2018 in six neighborhoods of Lahore and collected the data of 417 respondents. The short questionnaire applied in the survey facilitated generation of 15 individual and household, socioeconomic, and mobility-related variables of different types. Moreover, 9 land use variables as well as jobs-housing ratios were estimated for each respondent within his/her 600-meter street-network pedestrian shed. The produced dataset reveals preliminary descriptive statistics about the relations of employment and travel behavior, particularly commuting, in a less-studied context of Pakistan. It is found that a decent job-housing balance at neighborhood scale alone cannot affect the travel pattern much in the Pakistani context. It needs to be supplemented with other planning interventions, mainly the accessibility to an integrated and efficient mass public transportation system, discouraging private car based policies and promotion of sustainable non-motorized travel modes. In the future, production of disaggregate mobility and land use data will add value to urban transportation research in the Global South.

Abstract

The circumstances of urban sprawl in the Middle Eastern cities have been basically examined; now we are aware of the existence of a crawling sprawl in the growth pattern of the region’s cities. Nevertheless, the extent and the causes of this phenomenon have not yet been clearly explained. Thus, two questions are still unanswered: (1) to what extent are the Middle Eastern cities sprawled?, (2) what are the main drivers of sprawl in the Middle East? This paper brings together several evidences from international and the national languages to provide explanation to the above. The findings show that urban and suburban sprawl is an inclusive pattern seen in a wide variety of city sizes, planning concepts, times, etc. Sprawl is not limited to large metropolitan areas; mid-sized and small cities of the region are also sprawling. Furthermore, administrative and planning reasons are the strongest causes of urban sprawl in the region.

Abstract

Increasing rates of body weight of children has become a motivation for investigating active transportation to school during the past years. Lack of proper data covering different geographical contexts is a problem seen in the literature of this subject. The present paper reports the findings of a recent survey on nine cities in seven European countries funded by the European Commission. The objective of the survey was to provide data covering several topics in relation with active commuting to school and body mass index, such as parental perceptions of safety and security, neighborhood facilities, land use characteristics, etc. in different regions of Europe in a way that cross-sectional comparisons between regions and city sizes is facilitated. For that, 2735 children/parents were handed out questionnaires, from whom 1424 filled out the questionnaires (response rate: 52%). This led to 1304 validated questionnaires. The respondents studied in 21 elementary schools of Foggia, Italy; Berlin, Germany; Thessaloniki, Greece; Rijeka, Croatia; Utrecht, The Netherlands; Łódź, Poland; Konstantynow, Poland; Malatya, Turkey, and Doğanşehir, Turkey as of March 2016 until January 2017. The survey instrument enables development of continuous and categorical variables for empirical research with strong focus on the built environment using the aggregate data provided by this study. It is expected that the output data eases production of knowledge about less-studied European contexts as well as cross-sectional comparison of results with more studied areas of Western Europe.