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The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12544-015-0168-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
This article is part of the Topical Collection on Accessibility and Policy Making
Accessibility measurements are good tools for analysing the performance of possible policies on land use / transport / society systems. Until now, accessibility has been approached from a static perspective, even when variations in it depend on short term temporal changes in network function. Solutions based on static measurements, with journey costs taken as units based on free-flow travel time; do not reflect real network performance at different times of the day.
In order to broaden our understanding of accessibility and study real-world dynamism in depth, information from new sources has been incorporated into traditional accessibility measurements, with actual observed data on the daily variations in speed profiles. These variations have been used to assess the impact of congestion on accessibility, with dynamic scenarios calculated every 15 min.
The variations in daily accessibility in the metropolitan areas of Madrid and Barcelona (Spain) have been mapped with reasonable computational costs. Although both cities have a similar global behaviour pattern, each has a different daily spatial accessibility distribution. Madrid appears to be more resilient than Barcelona.
With new technologies it is possible to overcome previous technical barriers, such as the lack of reliable information or calculating capacity. An ordinary computer has been used to obtain complete and detailed temporal profiles of the two traditional accessibility measurements. Thanks to these new measurements, we have a better understanding of accessibility. However, in order to express a dynamic phenomenon in static format, appropriate mapping schemes would have to be devised.