(File photo)

Nearly three quarters of daily trips in the Capital Region District are made by car, but the percentage of trips by active transportation and transit are increasing, according to a recent survey by market researcher Malatest.

The Origin Destination Household Travel Survey is conducted every five years to provide a picture of the travel habits of CRD residents.

7,159 households were surveyed, representing 4.2% of the regional population. The findings from those households were extrapolated to cover the demographics of the entire region.

Respondents recorded the number and nature of daily trips made over a 24-hour working weekday period. The findings paint a picture of where residents are going and how they get there.

The CRD reported several key takeaways from the survey, including:

  • a notable increase in the percentage of active transportation (human-powered transportation) and transit mode share,
  • a growth in overall trips that is less than the growth in population,
  • a notable increase in active transportation in jurisdictions with greater land-use density, and
  • an increase in transit use that is bucking trends elsewhere in North America where transit use has plateaued or declined.

‘Auto driver’ accounts for just over half of daily trips

56% of respondents recorded trips in which they were driving a car, according to the survey. The second highest category, car passenger, made up 15.5%.

Walking is the next highest at 14.2% of the daily share, and is the second-most prevalent mode during the midday inter-peak (people walking to and from lunch, for example).

Transit is strongest during peak periods at 7.5%, but that share rises to 10.3% during the morning rush and 8.5% in the afternoon.

Cycling, meanwhile, makes up 5.0% of daily trips, with similar spikes during morning and afternoon peaks. Interestingly, the survey notes an evening increase to 7.0%.

A chart that shows 56% of daily trips are made driving a car, according to a CRD survey. (Capital Region District)

A breakdown of the purpose of trips shows the return to home dominating at 38% of daily trips.

The second most frequent trip is to school, at 16.1.%, followed by shopping (11.5%) and recreation/social trips (10.7%).

A breakdown by percentage of the purpose of daily trips. (Capital Region District)

When the mode of transportation and trip purpose are considered together, the survey found that post-secondary trips make up just over half of transit share (50.1%).

It also found that one in five trips are via active transportation. 19.2% of shopping trips, in fact, use active transportation, not auto modes.

The CRD says the data gathered will be used to improve roads, transit options, and pedestrian and cycling facilities in the region.


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