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The Economic Benefits of Improved Accessibility to Transport Systems Roundtable

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Accessibility Benefits Roundtable - Chair's Summary

Factors such as age, disability, and to a different extent travelling with young children or with heavy luggage, impede the mobility of transport users. There are both global instruments and national laws which recognize the importance of making transport systems more accessible for these groups of users.

Therefore a key objective of transport policy and planning should be to guarantee and enhance accessibility, but progress is this field is constrained by competing demands for funding, and an often unclear understanding of the economic benefits of improved accessibility. Benefits should be better defined, quantified an incorporated in a consistent appraisal framework that values accessibility improvements appropriately.

In the absence of adequate appraisal, policymakers may fail to incorporate considerations of the benefits of improved accessibility in long-term decisions and plans. They might also struggle to make decisions on the appropriate allocation of responsibilities in this area of investment. In addition, the cost of inaction (in terms of foregone benefits) is often large and not accounted for.

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