The Audit Commission (UK) (2000, paragraph 8) notes ‘If an organisation does not measure what it values, it will end up valuing what can be measured’. Transport markets and public agencies have a strong tradition of measuring the number of travellers and vehicles, but have been less effective at measuring gaps in coverage and whether the network coverage allows customers access to the places where they need to travel.
Across the world it is recognised there is a need to focus on transport investment, to connect up the economy and society. This makes the purpose of transport investment clearer, not just connecting New Zealand for competitive access to international markets, but ensuring that a child has safe access to the school in their neighbourhood.
Accessibility planning is the technique whereby the gaps in the current transport system can be identified and then action taken to rectify that situation.