Active travel, public transportation use, and daily transport among older adults: The association of built environment


Objectives: To examine active travel and public transportation use among U.S. older adults and the built environment characteristics associated with them. Methods: Total active travel, public transportation trips, travel purpose diversity, total and maximum distance traveled for older adults (>= 65 years) relative to middle age adults (45–64 years) as reported in the 2009 National Household Travel Survey (NHTS) were compared using linear regression models and logistic regression models. Results: Overall, adults over 65 years of age had 3.3 trips and total travel distance of 20.6 miles per day. Active travel and daily transport trips declined from younger to older age groups. Among the older adults, the daily transport varied by a number of characteristics. The association of built environment on older adults’ transport differed by the specific environmental characteristics and travel modes. Discussion: Existing transportation facilities and policies need to be adjusted to meet the challenge. Our study has a potential to contribute to the design of effective interventions that enhance health and quality of life for the burgeoning aging population in the U.S.

Publication Title

Journal of Transport and Health