This report measures accessibility, the ease of reaching valued destinations, for 8 major Australian cities, covering around 70% of resident workers and employment opportunities nationally. Accessibility, measured as the cumulative number of opportunities reachable within travel time thresholds, to both jobs and to workers’ residences are measured. This report includes accessibility by four modes of transport: automobile, transit, walking, and cycling, and compares accessibility between cities, across modes, and for the job-to-labor balance. The effects of traffic congestion on automobile travel times and the walking and transfer elements of the transit mode are reflected in the accessibility measures. The accessibility measurements capture the combined effect of land use and transport infrastructure.
Automobile has higher accessibility than transit, walking, or cycling. Sydney and Melbourne have the highest regional job and resident worker numbers, and the best overall automobile accessibility among Australian cities; but Perth has the greatest number of jobs and workers reachable by automobile within 30 minutes during the morning peak period. Melbourne has modestly better automobile accessibility than Sydney.
Transit accessibility remains at a significant disadvantage compared to automobile, reaching between 12% to 18% of the amount of urban opportunities accessible by automobile under a 30 minutes threshold. Transit accessibility tends to be higher in city centers, and low in other places. The disparity between transit and automobile accessibility peaks at between 20 to 30 minutes travel time threshold, which overlaps, with the latent one-way ‘travel time budget’. Sydney and Melbourne have the best transit accessibility among Australian cities, followed by Perth and Brisbane.
This report identifies cycling as a viable option for improving accessibility. Assuming cyclists are willing to ride on-street, more opportunities can be reached by cycling than by transit within 30 minutes in all 8 cities. Within 30 minutes, cycling can reach about twice as many jobs as transit in all 8 Australian cities, and around one-third of job opportunities reachable by automobile (excluding Perth, which is 16%). Sydney, Melbourne have the highest walking and cycling accessibility.
City centers are characterized by superior accessibility to both jobs and workers, higher jobs-to-workers ratios, and less pronounced advantage in automobile accessibility compared to other modes.
Accessibility measurements are made at the Statistical Area 2 level for 8 am trip departure time. City level accessibility measures are produced as a population-weighted average to best represent the experience of the working population in general. Maps of 30-minute accessibility are included in this report, reflecting the latent travel time budget, and the vision of the 30-minute city.