Spatial Equity and High-Speed Rail Systems

Spatial Equity and High-Speed Rail Systems

L. Biggiero F. Pagliara A. Patrone F. Peruggini

Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, University of Naples Federico II, Italy

Available online: 
31 January 2017
| Citation



In the literature by spatial accessibility it is meant a measure of spatial equity represented by the ease of travelling from an origin to a destination with a given transport mode. Recent investments in highspeed rail (HSR) systems have brought an increase in accessibility as well as equity issues, which will be discussed in this contribution.

Indeed equity impacts, due to the extension of the HSR network in Italy, are here evaluated through the results of a joint revealed preference/stated preference (RP/SP) survey. In the first part of the questionnaire submitted to Italian travellers, i.e. the RP exercise, socio-economic data about the users together with information concerning their trip have been collected. In the second part of the questionnaire, the SP exercise has been employed. Specifically, nine hypothetical scenarios have been submitted to respondents with the objective of understanding what was the transport mode chosen, within a given context, and to see whether HSR was the preferred alternative (or it was an element of spatial exclusion).

The main policy implications of this study are that investors in HS  should take into account not only the economic benefits brought by them, but also the spatial imbalance brought by these systems.


spatial equity, accessibility; high-speed rail investments


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