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The new modal

2021 • Harjumaa Region • Estonia

A framework for equitable public transit stops.

How do we ensure mobility justice beyond the municipal border of smart cities?

With the advancement of smart city solutions, the supply of high-efficiency public transport has become a luxury in top-tier cities. This has introduced an imbalance between municipalities that can afford smart-city solutions and those that don’t. The uneven distribution of mobility services across regions exacerbates social inequalities and fails to provide equal opportunity between cities and rural communities. The challenge we face is to ensure mobility justice beyond the municipal border of smart cities.

Together with Demos Helsinki, we have compiled a “Mobility justice handbook” for policymakers to bridge the mobility equity gap in the region and promote local innovation processes – taking into account both the current capacity of the public transport system and the local and societal potential.

Mobility justice 1 GTFS analysis of public transit performance.

We contributed to the goal of making data meaningful by turning unstructured GTFS data into the a regional mobility equity map. This cartography is designed by combining public transit performance and potential demand. The more distributed the service performance and potential demand, the higher mobility equity is across the region. Service performance is an index that relies on GTFS, route delays and passenger count data. Potential demand is an index that relies on the National database of the built environment, census data and qualitative observations of points-of-interest data.

The relationships between performance and demand revealed a clear divide between the high-quality service provided in Tallinn and the lower service performance present in all other municipalities. In the long term, this can increase social inequalities between the capital city and its commuter belt, grow the urban/rural divide, and incentivise the use of cars for daily commuting.

Mobility justice 2 GTFS analysis of public transit performance.


↗︎ The executive summary in English is available here

↗︎ The executive summary in Estonian is available here with the attached Annex 1 and Annex 2

↗︎ The final report in Estonian is available here

↗︎ A keynote in Estonian is available here


↗︎ A blog post was published on Demos Helsinki

Team Members: Damiano Cerrone, Kristj Grišakov, John Hadaway, Kristjan Männigo, Jesús López Baeza

Project Lead: PM Kristj Grišakov / PI Damiano Cerrone

Project Partners: Demos Helsinki