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Correlates of Walking for Transportation and Use of Public Transportation Among Adults in St Louis, Missouri, 2012
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  • Description:
    Introduction

    Attributes of the built environment can influence active transportation, including use of public transportation. However, the relationship between perceptions of the built environment and use of public transportation deserves further attention. The objectives of this study were 1) to assess the relationship between personal characteristics and public transportation use with meeting national recommendations for moderate physical activity through walking for transportation and 2) to examine associations between personal and perceived environmental factors and frequency of public transportation use.

    Methods

    In 2012, we administered a mail-based survey to 772 adults in St Louis, Missouri, to assess perceptions of the built environment, physical activity, and transportation behaviors. The abbreviated International Physical Activity Questionnaire was used to assess walking for transportation and use of public transportation. The Neighborhood Environment Walkability Scale was used to examine perceptions of the built environment. Associations were assessed by using multinomial logistic regression.

    Results

    People who used public transportation at least once in the previous week were more likely to meet moderate physical activity recommendations by walking for transportation. Age and employment were significantly associated with public transportation use. Perceptions of high traffic speed and high crime were negatively associated with public transportation use.

    Conclusion

    Our results were consistent with previous research suggesting that public transportation use is related to walking for transportation. More importantly, our study suggests that perceptions of traffic speed and crime are related to frequency of public transportation use. Future interventions to encourage public transportation use should consider policy and planning decisions that reduce traffic speed and improve safety.

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