Does built environment matter in a medium-sized African city? Empirical evidence from the interaction between land use and travel behavior

A bulk of the empirical studies on land use and travel behavior seem to focus on Western, European, and Asian cities. The experience of cities in Africa has been grossly understudied and left unaccounted for in global literature. A substantial number of these studies concluded that variables in the built environment are important determinants of travel behavior. It is the view of this paper that some African cities, like the Benin metropolitan region, may deviate from the hypothesis of land use-travel behavior interaction in several other studies, which seems to imply that built environment components are among the key factors impacting travel behavior. This paper is aimed at examining how the built environment and socioeconomic and demographic attributes affect travel behavior in a medium-sized African city, using the Benin metropolitan region as an example. Using remotely sensed datasets and metropolitan-wide survey data of 1,735 valid responses, a nested logit choice model was estimated. The result revealed that built environment indicators have a weak association with travel behavior and that individual characteristics like socioeconomics and demographics prove to be strong variables that influence people’s travel behavior in the study area. The study provides support for the association between built environment indicators, individual indicators, and travel behavior. It suggested that, unlike the cities of most advanced nations, the Benin metropolitan region somewhat deviated in the manifestation of travel behavior. It was recommended that more studies be conducted in African cities. Such research could disclose additional important details regarding African behavior and how it influences their decision-making.


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  • Accession Number: 01890004
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 14 2023 8:53AM