Modeling vehicle ownership with machine learning techniques in the Greater Tamale Area, Ghana

Vehicle ownership modeling and prediction is a crucial task in the transportation planning processes which, traditionally, uses statistical models in the modeling process. However, with the advancement in computing power of computers and Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning (ML) algorithms are becoming an alternative or a complement to the statistical models in modeling the transportation planning processes. Although the application of ML algorithms to the transportation planning processes—like mode choice, and traffic forecasting and demand modeling—have received much attention in research and abound in literature, scanty attention is paid to its application to vehicle ownership modeling especially in the context of small to medium cities in developing countries. Therefore, this study attempts to fill this gap by modeling vehicle ownership in the Greater Tamale Area (GTA), a typically small to medium city in Ghana. Using a cross sectional survey of formal sectors workers, data was collected between June–August 2018. The study applied nine different ML classification algorithms to the dataset using 10-fold cross-validation technique/s and the Cohen-Kappa static/statistic to evaluate the predictive performance of each of the algorithms, and the Permutation Feature Importance to examine the features that contribute significantly to the prediction of vehicle ownership in GTA. The results showed that Linear Support Vector Classification (LinearSVC) classifier performed well in comparison with the other classifiers with regards to the overall predictive ability of the classifiers. In terms of class predictions, K- Nearest Neighbors (KNN) classifier performs well for no-vehicle class whiles Linear Support Vector Classification (LinearSVC) and GaussianNB classifiers performs well for motorcycle ownership. LinearSVC and Logistic Regression classifiers performed well on the car ownership class. Also, the results indicated that travel mode choice, average monthly income, average travel distance to workplace, average monthly expenditure on transport, duration of travel to workplace, occupational rank, age, household size and marital status were significant in predicting vehicle ownership for most of the classifiers. These findings could help policies makers carve out strategies that would reduce vehicle ownership but improve personal mobility.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: e0246044
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    Open Access (libre)

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01769465
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Feb 22 2021 6:18PM