The Influence of Covid-19 on Metro Resilience: Evidence from Four Chinese Cities
24 Pages Posted: 11 Jan 2022
Many papers have studied the effects of shocks on public transport resilience, but most focus on physical damage. This paper examines the effects of policies and diseases on metro system. Daily passenger journey data from China have been used to reveal the causal impact of COVID-19 on metro resilience. We choose Wuhan because it has been hardest hit by the epidemic and had the largest scale community lockdown. Shenzhen, Nanjing and Chongqing are provided as references. We find: first, the resilience of subways in all cities was hit hard after the pandemic, but the speed of recovery varies widely; second, only long-term or extensive suspension of operations will block resilience. Short-term or a slight fluctuation of operation affects metro resilience slightly; third, because of strong commuting demand rigidity, mere sensitivity to the number of increasing cases could not hinder the metro recovery process,petrol price and precipitation matter even less. Moreover, COVID-19 has greater impact on non-commuter metro travel which are more prevalent at weekends; fourth, appropriate government policy can not only control the spread of the epidemic but also reduce economic losses and social unrest.
Keywords: metro resilience, COVID-19, lockdown policy, Wuhan
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