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Urban Transport Market Determinants in Kenya: Modal Choice Analysis

George A. Makajuma
Marius de Langen


Transport markets in most low-income countries are still not fully developed to embrace free-market economy with effective competitive mechanism to help regulate it. This study was aimed at enhancing the understanding of perceived competition on the streets between two main public transport modes in the city of Kisumu—boda-boda (bicycle taxis) and matatu (minibus) with a view to identifying the key policy variables critical for redressing mobility problems in the city. Discrete choice modelling was used to quantify the contribution of various transport system variables in determining traveller’s modal choice or in modifying the decision to undertake a trip. Analysis was confined to the two predominant public transport modes. Revealed Preference (RP) and Stated Preference (SP) data collection techniques were employed in this study to capture data on explanatory variables as input for modal choice analysis. The estimated models showed that fare as a variable has little influence on a trip maker’s modal choice; household income, access/egress times and fear of accident however, do affect mode choice by a large measure. On the whole, spatial accessibility remains the key mobility problem in Kisumu. Further, the study underscores the fact that understanding travel desires of trip makers is critical for correcting the transport crisis in most developing cities and for planning future transport networks.

Key words:      Fare, Modal choice, Transport market