Long-term differential effects of transport infrastructure investment in rural areas

Abstract: European and national transport policies identify territorial cohesion as their main goal. However, the lack of attention to intra-regional relationships has complicated the understanding of the diverse repercussions of these policies on the economic and social equity of rural areas over time. Long-term assessments of transport effects in these less studied areas, which cover more than two thirds of the European territory, are essential to identify common problems associated with transport investments and to detect potential strategies to confront their future challenges. This paper, analyses the effects of transport policy development in the Spanish Northwest Area over the last 20?years, where about 95% of municipalities are considered rural. The assessment focuses on the spatial effects of transport development, using a Geographical Information System (GIS), and inequality and correlation analyses of accessibility, demographic and economic indicators. Results show that while the accessibility gap between urban and rural areas was reinforced by the construction of high-capacity infrastructures during the first half of the study period, the completion of the network during the second decade balanced this situation, enabling a more equitable access to basic services, goods and opportunities. However, these improvements have not been enough to reverse the initial lagging inertia of the rural areas and to reduce their socioeconomic disadvantages against urban ones.

 Fuente: Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice Volume 125, July 2019, Pages 234-247

Editorial: Elsevier Ltd

 Fecha de publicación: 01/07/2019

Nº de páginas: 14

Tipo de publicación: Artículo de Revista

DOI: 10.1016/j.tra.2018.01.026

ISSN: 0965-8564,1879-2375

Url de la publicación: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tra.2018.01.026