Part of: Financing Sustainable Urban Development: An Introduction

Investing in transport


Transport investment includes costs related to roads, rail, and buses (OECD 2017Lefevre et al 2016). Major arterials and urban highways take up the majority of road spending, but are not a long-term solution for reducing congestion. Greater investments in public transport, walking and biking infrastructure, and electrification of vehicles will be needed.

  • In the past six years, annual global metro ridership grew by over 8.7 million passengers (an increase of nearly 20 percent). Over the next five years, more than 200 new transit lines are projected to open around the world (UITP 2018).

Global Metro Network Ridership (millions)

Source: UITP 2018
  • Globally, there were approximately 370,000 battery-powered electric buses in 2017, more than twice as many as in 2015 (IEA 2018). These buses require new infrastructure such as charging facilities and new technologies. 

Hybrid and Electric Bus Adoption around the World

Source: WRI 2019a
  • With 84 million trips in 2018 in the United States made through ride-sharing, scooter-sharing, and bike-sharing operations, there is a huge potential for healthier, more active transport that reduces congestion and greenhouse gas emissions (NACTO 2018). But these systems require new investment for infrastructure to ensure the safety of users and those around them. 

84 Million Trips Made on Shared Micro-mobility Vehicles in the US, 2018

Source: NACTO 2018