Effectiveness of Public Transport Social Fares and Special Transport Services in the Barcelona Metropolitan Area
MAITE PÉREZ PÉREZ, INSTITUT D'ESTUDIS REGIONALS I METROPOLITANS DE BARCELONA (IERMB), NÚRIA PÉREZ-SANS, INSTITUT D'ESTUDIS REGIONALS I METROPOLITANS DE BARCELONA (IERMB)
The project allows to obtain indicators of effectiveness of current social policies in public transport fare ticketing and in specific transport services, identifying territorial differences and highlighting the aspects that can be improved.
In the metropolitan area of Barcelona several administrations and authorities are competent in the definition and implementation of social policies in mobility, particularly those related to public transport.
Some of these policies, especially those relating to social pricing and specific services of transport, have a long trajectory. In fact, in 1979 the Barcelona City Council launched the special transport service for disabled people, and, one year later, the first social fares focused on elderly and disabled people. Both policies have been extended to other municipalities since then, there have appeared other types of services, and the collectives- to whom these policies are addressed-, have been increased. This last measure has been strengthly promoted since the economic crisis beggining.
However, the effectiveness of the policies has not been sufficiently discussed. For this reason, we are dealing with a project whose objective is to assess the appropriateness or not of some social policies, evaluating the coverage and use among the potential population and beneficiaries.
On the one hand, we will gather: the main features of social fare tickets in the public transport system in the Barcelona metropolitan area (for unemployed, large families, single parents’ families, the elderly, etc.), and the exclusive public transport services, specific to certain groups (disabled persons, children, etc.). On the other hand, we will get information about the users of these policies, and the use made of them. And finally, we will get information about the potential population to whom these policies are addressed. These three databases will be crossed to obtain efficiency indicators, coverage of services’ indicators or gaps in coverage. The works are carried out within a ten years period, that allows for evaluating the changes and linking them -or not- to variations in the conditions of access to these policies.
Preliminary results obtained with respect to the use of social transport tickets, show how their coverage among the elderly living in the first metropolitan ring is less than that among persons with disabilities (44.7% vs 77.9%), and that this coverage differs considerably from one municipality to another (fact clearly related to the income level). Or that the T-12 (children’s free public transport ticket) has a wider coverage among children living in the first metropolitan ring with respect to the rest of the metropolitan territory (42.9% compared to 6.4%). We are also dealing with the use made of these services in comparison to the use of non-specific tickets and services among general population.
The project allows to obtain indicators of effectiveness of current policies in the area of fare ticketing and in specific transport services, identifying the existing territorial differences and highlighting the aspects that can be improved. In the future, we expect to expand this research to other social policies in other areas that are currently offering these services in the area of Barcelona.
Association for European Transport