Research Report 481 Demand for transport services: impact on networks of older persons' travel as the population of New Zealand ages
Published: May 2012
Sustainable land transport
Research & reports
This research, undertaken in 2010, aimed to provide predictions of older persons' (age 65+) demand for transport until the mid-21st century in New Zealand, and how this will affect our networks.
- Projections which do not take an aging population into account overstate the increase in household travel by ~40%.
- Assumptions about population health factors make a small difference in travel estimates to 2020 but have greater impact thereafter.
- Changes in the age structure of the workforce increased total household travel demand by about 1%.
- Wide regional variations mean that each region will require its own approach to future transport and safety.
- Public transport will be a minor mode without improved public transport for suburban neighbourhoods.
- Vehicle safety, operator and accessibility issues need to be addressed.
- People aged 65-80 years are relatively content with the transport system, but those who are older indicated they would travel more if they could.
- Older women feel more constrained in their travel choices than older men.
- Road deaths and injuries will be similar to those expected for a population without any age structure change. However, older persons' injuries will become a greater proportion of all road trauma.