Understanding Travel Demand and Built Environment Factors to Optimize Increased ZEV Access in Underserved Communities

Principle Investigator: Scott Hardman
Co-principle investigator: Jesus Barajas

Project Partners: Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis, The Greenlining Institute, Self Help Enterprises, and Transform

Project Funder: The California Air Resources Board

The aim of this research project is to understand to the mobility needs of underserved communities and understand whether & how ZEVs can cost-effectively meet this need. This will include answering the following research questions, plus any topics raised by the project advisory committee, and that come to light during the project.

  • What are the mobility needs of underserved communities, are these being met, and how do are they met? (e.g. where do they travel, by what travel model, etc.)
  • What are households’ awareness, knowledge, and perceptions of ZEVs?
  • How do attributes of ZEVs (price, range, charging time, etc.) impact the viability of ZEV adoption in households in underserved communities?
  • How does the built environment impact ZEV viability (including house type, home charging access and the potential for home charging, public charging access, etc.) in underserved communities?
  • What can be done to increase ZEV adoption potential in underserved communities? (Including incentives, infrastructure, outreach and education, and other mobility options e.g. car sharing)

Answering these research questions will inform how additional policy measures may address built environment factors such as housing stock and infrastructure availability that may limit the viability of ZEVs for these communities. To meet these aims we will:

  • Collect data from residents of underserved communities throughout the state using community listening sessions and a survey administered via mail and in person recruitment. This will collect data on household vehicle ownership, household travel (by vehicle transit, car share, walking, bike, etc.), household characteristics, home type (inc. parking & electricity access), preferences and perceptions of ZEVs (including shared ZEVs, micro mobility, and e-transit), and awareness of ZEVs and ZEV infrastructure.
  • Analyse data to understand whether community mobility needs are being met, how built environment factors (e.g. housing type, infrastructure) limit ZEV adoption, any barriers to ZEV adoption, and whether communities needs may be better served with other technologies. Analysis will include investigating variation between and within regions.
  • Compile findings in a report, policy brief, and presentations which will include policy recommendations.
Project Status
In Progress
Project Dates

Project Type