A Hotspot of Walking in and around the Central Business District

Leveraging Coarsely Geocoded Routinely Collected Data

Soumya Mazumdar, Nasser Bagheri, Shanley Chong, Tom Cochrane, Bin Jalaludin, Rachel Davey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A growing literature is pointing towards the prevalence of healthy lifestyles, such as adequate walking, in the Central Business District (CBD) of many cities. However, only one study has investigated the presence of walking hotpsots. Using coarsely geocoded, routinely collected survey data from the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), and a unique ‘overlap of spatial clusters’ approach, we investigated if a) There were patterns of clustering in walking behaviours, b) If these clusters were co-located and therefore associated with various built environment characteristics and c) What the demographic and active transport use profiles of the residents of these clusters were. A hotspot of walking was found in the CBD of the ACT, co-located with hotspots or spatial clusters of dwelling density, public transport frequency and destination accessibility. Residents of the hotspot walked approximately an hour more than the average ACT resident and had significantly higher odds of using active transport to workplaces relative to driving. Odds ratios of walking relative to driving to work were 9.20 (5.97, 14.18) and bicycling were 3.54 (1.87, 6.69) in the walking hotspot compared to non-hotspots. Policies directed towards creating a ‘CBD like’ built environment in various locations of cities or refurbishing and redesigning existing CBDs to make them more liveable helps encourage walking behaviors. In addition coarsely geocoded, freely available routinely collected survey data can be used to investigate relationships that may help drive policy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-20
Number of pages20
JournalApplied Spatial Analysis and Policy
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Oct 2019


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