A systematic review of the impacts of the coronavirus crisis on urban transport: Key lessons learned and prospects for future cities

Cities. 2022 Aug;127:103770. doi: 10.1016/j.cities.2022.103770. Epub 2022 May 27.


The COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on the transport sector worldwide. Lockdown and physical distancing requirements continue to be enforced in many cities leading to severe travel restrictions and travel demand reduction to limit the spread of the disease. This article provides bibliometric evidence-based insights into how the pandemic has exposed the vulnerability of established public transport systems and shared mobility solutions. It shows how some transport interventions can accelerate the shift to sustainable urban mobility practices such as micro-mobility and active transport. To accomplish this, the article examines recent studies (244 publications) from the Scopus database using a rigorous systematic literature review approach covering the period from January 2020 to February 2021. Importantly, the mapping of bibliographic coupling and co-citation analysis showed four heterogeneous clusters representing research efforts into "environment", "travel behavior and mode choice", "public transport", and "interventions". Inductive reasoning is used to analyze the disruptions that cities have encountered worldwide, the rapid interventions that were put in place, the aftershocks and the short and long-term impacts. Finally, the paper summarizes the lessons learned and opportunities ahead, and the challenges that must be overcome. The article also outlines pathways to build on the momentum of sustainable practices as part of a holistic approach for enabling resilient transport solutions for the new urban world.

Keywords: COVID-19; Environment; Public transport; Resilient cities; Travel behavior; Urban transport.