A novel analysis framework for the spatial aspects of car travel, measured by vehicle miles travelled (VMT), extended to include a variable decomposition approach that captures potential asymmetries and hysteresis in a spatial setting.
This project provides a novel analysis framework for the spatial aspects of car travel, measured by vehicle miles travelled (VMT), extended to include a variable decomposition approach that captures potential asymmetries and hysteresis in a spatial setting. The specification enables the analysis of VMT spatial spillovers and diffusion between neighbouring areas and their characteristics. A panel dataset at sub-regional level is compiled based on officially recorded car mileage information in England and Wales. The next step is to expand the spatial matrix specifications to capture transport network effects, feeding into the current methodological framework. There are rapid developments regarding the spatial matrix construction in other fields, where weight matrices capture a range of complicated data linkage structures.
The results illustrate asymmetries and hysteresis in price elasticities with a distinct and significant spatial component. The effect of public transport infrastructure to car travel is only significant in the spatial models, underlying the essential spatial dimension of analysing such effects. The impact magnitude on VMT from a number of factors, such as congestion, rebound effects from increasing engine size, alternative fuel use, and “fuel deserts” in rural areas, is also estimated. The results provide support to the car use saturation hypothesis through both the negative VMT trend and the positive impact of motorisation rate that captures car dependence, rather than car use intensity.
- Findings show price asymmetries with a distinct spatial component
- Effect of public transport to VMT only significant in a spatial setting
- “Fuel deserts” in rural areas increase VMT
Sotirios Thanos (formerly UCL Energy Institute)
Thanos, S., M. Kamargianni, and A. Schäfer 2016. Car travel demand: spillovers and asymmetric price effects in a spatial Setting. Paper submitted for publication to Transportation Science.