More Ottawa and Gatineau residents are opting to hop on a bike or bus to travel across the region instead of getting into a car, according to a study released Thursday.
The 2011 Origin Destination Survey for the National Capital Region shows that since the last survey in 2005, daily transit use rose by nine per cent.
Cycling also increased “significantly,” with transit and cycling trips representing the largest percentage of user increases out of all modes of transportation.
Automobile usage increased by 4.7 per cent, with the total population of the NRC growing by 7.2 per cent.
“It is good to see that more people are choosing alternative modes of transportation for their daily travel across the city and region,” stated Ottawa mayor Jim Watson in a press release.
“As we work to improve our transportation networks, including the construction and implementation of the Confederation Light Rail Line, people will have even more reasons to make these more sustainable choices.”
The survey also revealed that 49 per cent of trips to downtown Ottawa during the morning peak are made using transit. In the afternoon, transit accounts for 48 per cent of downtown trips. Back in 2005, those numbers were at 43 per cent and 41 per cent, respectively.
Across the region, 76 per cent of travel during the morning peak was from commutes to work and school, while the evening return trips accounted for 64 per cent of the afternoon peak travel.
The survey was conducted in the fall of 2011 as a partnership between the City of Ottawa, Ville de Gatineau, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, Ministère des Transports du Québec, OC Transpo and Société de transport de l'Outaouais (STO). It captured the travelling habits of 25,000 randomly selected households from the National Capital Region over a 24-hour period.
The survey results will be used to inform future transportation infrastructure and services planning, according to the release.