Public attitudes to and perceptions of high speed rail in the UK

Harvey, Joan, Thorpe, Neil, Caygill, Matthew and Namdeo, Anil (2014) Public attitudes to and perceptions of high speed rail in the UK. Transport Policy, 36. pp. 70-78. ISSN 0967-070X

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With the planned expansion of high speed rail (HSR) in the UK, demand for longer-distance travel is expected to increase significantly over the coming decades. This paper presents a study into attitudes and perceptions of long distance travel in the UK, particularly in relation to HSR. A questionnaire was developed to investigate attitudes to travelling long distances and to HSR, importance of journey characteristics and current travel behaviours. A factor analysis of 46 attitude items yielded six factors: travel security, improvement to road and air, prestige of HSR, comfort, negative aspects of HSR and the usefulness of travel time. Analyses showed significant demographic and travel characteristic differences across the factors. There was also evidence of a more negative impact and lower prestige for people living closer to proposed HSR routes. Willingness to pay for travel time saved was related to a number of journey characteristics but the utility of time was also important. The findings are considered in light of theories of attitude change, attitudes to travel and sustainability and the implications for the future development of HSR policy, particularly in terms of balancing increased fares with utility of travel time.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Attitudes, High speed rail (HSR), Long distance travel, Situational influence
Subjects: F800 Physical and Terrestrial Geographical and Environmental Sciences
N800 Tourism, Transport and Travel
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Geography and Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Rachel Branson
Date Deposited: 29 Jun 2020 12:57
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2021 11:34

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