Improving accessibility to transit: An examination of the public transportation system for older adults in Winnipeg, Manitoba

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Leckie, Aaron
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An aging population will be a defining characteristic of Canadian demographics for the next 30 years. The convenience, reliability, and flexibility of public transportation systems to meet new and changing demands will be an important issue as Canadian cities age. Blending approaches from urban planning, transportation planning, and gerontology, the researcher investigated public transportation services for older adults in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The focus of this research was to understand how the City of Winnipeg prioritizes and funds transit improvements, the barriers that older adults encounter when using transit, and to look at existing challenges and opportunities to enhance the public transit system. Multiple methods were used in this study. The researcher conducted interviews with urban professionals working for the City of Winnipeg, hosted a focus group with older adult users of public transportation, and collected the demographic data of focus group participants through an exit survey. This research finds that older adults in Winnipeg encounter several barriers to transit which largely fit under the general themes of access to bus stops, access to information, and access to destinations. Recommendations and further areas of investigation are provided.
Age-friendly, Universal design, Travel chain approach, Barrier-free design, Life-course perspective, Winter cities