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How making public transit more hospitable for women could increase ridership

LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 28:  A woman rides a Metro train on March 28, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. Between 2016 and 2017, public transit ridership fell in the country's seven largest transit markets- New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, D.C., San Francisco, Boston and Philadelphia. Researchers conclude losses stem from lower gas prices, increased teleworking, a rise in the use of Uber and Lyft, along with other factors.  (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Mario Tama/Getty Images
A woman rides a Metro train on March 28, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.

According to a paper presented last week at the annual Transportation Research Board Meeting in Washington D.C., less women were taking advantage of the seemingly accessible new Expo line when it opened in 2012.

It seems like a simple concept: use public transit and help save the environment.

But, as reported by Wired, the choice to take a bus or train is more complicated for women. According to a paper presented last week at the annual Transportation Research Board Meeting in Washington D.C., less women were taking advantage of the seemingly accessible new Expo line when it opened in 2012.

That could be because of safety reasons, and not just at the Expo line. Bus stops in isolated, poorly lit areas could make it difficult for women who have to wait long periods of time for a ride. And harassment at stations or on trains or buses can go unreported because of distrust of police, or fear that law enforcement will not be able to do anything about harassers.

So what’s the solution make public transportation more hospitable for women and bring up overall ridership? Guest host Libby Denkmann speaks to transportation experts today to find out more.

With guest host Libby Denkmann

Guests:

Marlon Boarnet, professor of public policy and chair of urban planning at USC

Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris, professor of Urban Planning at UCLA; her research includes public transportation and women’s safety issues

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