Research on the mobility situation in Szeged housing estates

Szeged is Hungary's third most populous city, located on the banks of the Tisza River, near the Hungarian-Serbian-Romanian triple border. The city has 161 000 inhabitants. It is a city of bicycles, the public transport is excellent, and the municipality does a lot for sustainability, yet, in line with the trends, in the city there are more and more cars, and even in prefabricated housing estates with good public transport, parking problems have become common. The main question the research sought to answer is why so many cars appear in the housing estetes. The housing estates surveyed were the Újrókusi, the Északi városi, Makkosháza, Tarján, and the Felsővárosi area.



The research was based on a non-representative, yet wide-range online survey. Our task was to create the online questionnaire, process the results and run a prize draw to increase the response rate. The competition offered the chance to win 20 monthly public transport tickets by SZKT and 100 Lime coupons for 10 minutes of free travel. In addition to basic demographic data, the questionnaire included separate groups of questions on the use of public transport, road transport, walking and cycling. 880 responses were received from people living in or regularly visiting the housing estates. The respondents were divided into four groups, the main characteristics of which are shown in the table below:

Residents arriving in the housing estates (135 people) are typically younger, active and prefer to use public transport. The boundaries between modes of transport are not rigid.

Car-user residents living in the housing estates (112) are mainly of working age, open to cycling and scootering, but they hardly use public transport and find it unattractive. Many people travel to the city centre by car.

Sustainably travelling and driving residents in the housing estates (74) are generally young women living in a two-person household, car and local public transport users at the same time. They are occasional users of the local public transport (45% of them travel with a bus pass). They are not committed car users, but enjoy the benefits of the car, few would give it up. Bicycles are used mainly for leisure purposes.

Housing estate residents without car (350 people) are mostly women in active two-person households and college and university students (20%). They are regular users of public transport but commuting to work is only the third most common reason for using it. A significant proportion of these trips are occasional (21% use a season ticket). They consider the public transport expensive. Bicycles are mainly used for leisure and health reasons.

The results show that two-thirds of the respondents living in the housing estates do not own a car. 60% of the car-users use their car daily. Consequently, parking problems in the housing estates are caused by around a third of residents. Mobility in the housing estates continues to be determined by sustainable transport modes. One very specific finding of the research was that the proportion of people cycling from Rókus is very low (10%). The results were used to suggest ways of increasing the pool of sustainable users.

Our partner in the survey was SZKT, Szeged's electric public transport service provider, mainly operating trams and trolleybuses. The company also provides the back-up services for the Lime electric scooter and electric bike sharing systems in Szeged (removal of vehicles left in the wrong place, charging and replacement of batteries).



City of Szeged

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