Position Papers
Akira Morita et al.
University of Tokyo (Japan)
Published in
Submitted by
Peter Midgley, gTKP
Related theme(s)
Urban Mobility
Asia (AS)

Urban Transport and Local Governance in Asian Developing Countries

The rapid urbanization in Asia since the 1970s has caused many serious urban environmental problems, among which the degradation of the transport-related environment is most prominent. Overall assessment of the physical, socio-economic, and institutional factors affecting urban transport is a key to transport improvement in Asian metropolises. The purpose of this study is to understand the current situation of these factors in some selected metropolises, namely Bangkok and Metro Manila.

This paper comprises a) GIS-based land use analysis on the relationship between urbanization and transport infrastructure development, b) GPS-based travel behavior survey, and c) interview survey on residents’ satisfaction with transport infrastructures and services. It was shown that the current land use patterns largely differ depending on the existence of agricultural infrastructure development in the pre-urbanized stage. It was also confirmed by a GPS-based travel survey that travel behavior patterns in scattered development areas are significantly different from those in orderly development areas. The former areas lack not only road space but also a structured hierarchy of networks, resulting in inefficient travel behaviors with low speed and detours. The GPS survey gave clearer pictures to grasp the relationship between travel patterns of residents and their demand for the improvement of local transport services. It was indicated that local governments who are responsible for these demands often fail to meet them due to financial and institutional limitations of the current system.