Previous studies have reported that urban spatial structure and the spatial relationship between jobs and housing are strongly correlated with commuting patterns. Nevertheless, a number of studies have also supported the concept that the spatial relationship between workplaces and residences cannot be the only reason behind observed commuting behaviour. Some ‘soft’ factors also affect people’s commuting patterns. When considering these ‘soft’ factors, urban land development patterns such as urban structure and the spatial relationship between jobs and housing must not be overlooked. In this paper, we first conduct a brief review of the debate about how urban spatial structure and the jobs–housing relationship affect commuting patterns. Then we mainly focus on the ‘soft’ factors related to commuting behaviour. We divided the ‘soft factors’ into city-level factors and individual- and household-level factors. These perspectives will offer insights to identify a set of key factors that could affect the patterns of commuting
This paper began as a presentation in the 32nd International Geographical Congress in Cologne, Germany. The authors wish to acknowledge the helpful comments of audience on the presentation in the 32nd International Geographical Congress.
- urban spatial structure
- polycentric city
- jobs-housing balance
- socio-economic factors