Steven Jones – Department of Civil Construction & Environmental Engineering, University of Alabama, USA

Moses Tefe – Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Norwich University, USA

Seth Appiah-Opoku – Department of Geography, University of Alabama, USA

Abstract :

A framework is proposed for screening urban transport projects in developing countries to reflect local qualitative sustainable transport criteria. The framework is developed via a case study in Accra, Ghana. Relevant criteria are identified through interactions with local transport system providers and users. Individual transport system users were interviewed to ascertain their perceptions regarding sixteen urban transport-related criteria. Local system providers/experts were interviewed about the potential impact local transport projects might have on the sixteen criteria. The local input was evaluated through a Multi-Criteria Decision Making method to produce a term defined as the Localized Sustainability Score (LSS). The LSS can then be used to produce a relative ranking of potential projects, for use as a decision support for project screening and selection. The LSS was determined for five projects in Accra. Two of the projects were proposed roadway projects, two were proposed Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) projects and the fifth was a recently completed Non-motorized Transport (NMT) project. The relative LSS for each project was compared with relative rankings the projects received in separate previous evaluation studies conducted using conventional, quantitative data intensive methods. The LSS framework reflected the relative project ranking/priorities from the previous studies but allowed for a qualitative comparison among the different modes represented. In addition to project screening, the framework provides a means of documenting system user input. The framework can be used to document how urban transport projects address the needs and issues of different demographic groups (age, gender, income, etc.) of system users.