Alleviating poverty in low-income and developing nations is integral to social stability, attracting investments and generating employment opportunities which in turn elevate people’s well-being. Employment could be encouraged through a combination of direct (travel time and training) and indi- rect measures (social institutions like childcare and elder care). Other factors such as legal reform and infrastructure services could help as well. Transit is perhaps the first element (but not the only one) required to provide better access to the labor market, to health and educational facilities and to social institutions. Transit should be cheap, fast, safe, and secure to reach to most travelers within the influence area. The main objective of this research is to propose a method to fight poverty through better access to employment by a proactive cost-effective planning of investments in existing and future public transit systems. A decision-making system is developed to assess the current employment situation in different geographical regions considering unemployment rate, access to jobs and public transporta- tion systems. Real data from a case study of the Costa Rica metropolitan area is used to illustrate the applicability of the proposed approach. The results show that the proposed model can lead governments to a cost-effective solution that decreases the employment barrier index by more than 50% during the first 5 years. The proposed model will be beneficial for transit agencies in charge of BRT, Tramway, and suburban trains.
poverty, employment, sustainable development, transportation asset management
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