Smart Transport Networks

Smart Transport Networks

Market Structure, Sustainability and Decision Making

NECTAR Series on Transportation and Communications Networks Research

Edited by Thomas Vanoutrive and Ann Verhetsel

Transport is debated by many, and liberalization processes, transport policy, transport and climate change and increased competition between transport modes are the subject of heated discussion. Smart Transport Networks illustrates that whether concerning road, water, rail or air, knowledge on the structure of transport markets is crucial in order to tackle transport issues. The book therefore explores key factors concerning the structure of transport markets, their environmental impact, and questions why decision makers often fail to tackle transport-related problems.

Chapter 7: Modal accessibility disparity to terminals and its effect on the competitiveness of HST versus air transport

Juan Carlos García-Palomares, Javier Gutiérrez, Juan Carlos Martín and Concepción Román

Subjects: economics and finance, public sector economics, transport, urban and regional studies, transport


Spain has become a paradigmatic example of how to expand the European high-speed train (HST) network to become a high-density network that will interconnect the main Spanish cities. It has been much trumpeted that this expansion will increase the competitiveness of this mode versus other transport modes, such as coaches, private cars or air transport, and that a better modal share could be obtained for interurban transport in Spain. Nevertheless, little attention has been paid to an important issue, that is, how access to terminals plays an important role in promoting this so-called‘ competitiveness’. In Spain, one of the most important developed routes is the Madrid–Zaragoza–Barcelona corridor. This link is interesting to analyze because it joins the two most important economic poles of Spain, Madrid and Barcelona, and HST is in direct competition with the domestic airline market. This has resulted in an increased interest in the analysis of how different factors affect the modal competition in interurban corridors. Thereby, special attention is given to the different components that affect passengers’ behavior in interurban corridors, particularly the effects of access to terminals, train stations, and airports.

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