FGV Transport presents third edition of Urban Mobility Quality Index

​​​​​​​More than 80% of respondents consider mobility in their city to be OK, bad or terrible.

FGV Transport has just released the third edition of its Urban Mobility Quality Index, a diagnostic and monitoring tool for evaluating present mobility conditions in Brazilian cities. In all, 644 people were surveyed in April and May 2021. Most of the interviewees were aged from 31 to 60 and had a university degree. The survey analyzed travel profiles, the mode of transport used, duration of travel and reasons for travel.

At the end, the interviewees were asked to rate mobility in their city. Most of them (82.3%) rated it as OK, bad or terrible, while only 17.7% rated it as good or excellent. The Urban Mobility Quality Index uses a mathematical mode based on artificial intelligence. In the third edition, the average score was 4.7 (on a scale from 0 to 10), slightly better than in the previous editions (4.2 in October 2020 and 4.3 in January 2021). Even so, the overall evaluation of transportation in Brazilian cities was still poor.

Marcus Quintella, the director of FGV Transport, highlights the index’s importance for decision making in the public and private sectors. “The Urban Mobility Quality Index is an important control and monitoring instrument, as it reflects society’s perceptions of urban mobility. Essential information is generated to let government officials and decision makers understand people’s difficulties in their daily commute and how this affects the population’s quality of life,” he says.

Looking at the respondents’ travel profiles, more than 60% of trips start out in the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, and more than 40% of people do not have to make any transfer. More than half of the respondents said they only use one mode of transport. As for duration, most people take up to one hour to reach their destination, mainly for work reasons (more than 70% of trips).

Another noteworthy factor is the transportation mode used. In the survey’s first two editions, buses were the most popular option (40%), followed by private cars (25%), while in the third edition, buses and private cars tied, with 33.4% each. The subway was mentioned by approximately 14% of participants in all three editions.

The means of transport analyzed by these surveys are private cars, public transport (including public buses, trams, boats, trains and subway), bicycles, motorcycles, taxis, chartered vehicles and walking. Participants are asked to give a score from 0 to 10 for each mode. Private transport such as cars and taxis received the highest score, while public transport received the worst rating.

According to Quintella, the latest survey shows the pandemic’s impact on Brazil’s socioeconomic variables, such as high unemployment and lower income. “The survey highlights the lack of planning and failure to optimize different transport modes, coupled with low investment in mass transport, such as trains and subways. We also noticed that transport assets have depreciated, especially buses, mainly due to companies’ difficulty in maintaining them, as well as many people’s greater use of private vehicles out of fear of catching COVID-19,” he says.

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Any opinions expressed by Fundação Getulio Vargas’s staff members, duly identified as such, in articles and interviews published in any media, merely represent the opinions of these individuals and do not necessarily represent the institutional viewpoints or opinions of FGV. FGV Directive No. 19 / 2018.