The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments last year conducted a survey of more than 6,200 people in the region to get their thoughts and attitudes about transportation and commuting in the region. The results are being used to help guide the region’s long-term “Visualize 2045” plan.
The survey has some intriguing tidbits about what commuters prioritize when considering transit options. Let’s take a look at five of them.
As we reported last week, reliability was a major priority for commuters when selecting their mode of travel. Sixty-five percent of all commuters and more than 70 percent of driver listed reliability as #1 or #2.
Safety Isn’t That Big of a Priority
Despite all the talk of safety on Metro, commuters generally didn’t list safety as a top priority. Barely more than 20 percent of commuters put safety in their top two when it came to priorities, and it was below 20 percent for bikers, walkers, and bus riders. The survey did reveal that women prioritized safety a bit more than men.
Bus Riders Seek Affordability
Those seeking an inexpensive ride to work like the bus. Nearly 40 percent of bus riders said affordability is a #1 or #2 priority. Drivers listed affordability less than 30 percent of the time. Hispanic and African-American commuters tended to priroritize affordability as well.
Suburban Commuters Care More About Travel Time
Not surprisingly, those commuters coming in from the suburbs prioritized travel time more than those living in the District, Alexandria, or Arlington (the inner core.) Outer suburban residents prioritized travel time at a clip of more than 50 percent, compared to 30 percent for inner core residents.
Bikers Valued Non-Driving Options
When commuters were asked if it was important to have options others than driving, most placed that low on their priority list. Bikers were the exception. Nearly 25 percent of bikers placed this as a #1 or #2 priority, compared to 15 percent for all commuters.