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A transport typology of major German cities


  • Christian Holz-Rau TU Dortmund
  • Rabea Heyer Technische Universität Dortmund
  • Mirjam Schultewolter Technische Universität Dortmund
  • Johannes Aertker Technische Universität Dortmund
  • Isabelle Wachter Technische Universität Dortmund
  • Thomas Klinger ILS – Institut für Landes- und Stadtentwicklungsforschung



Travel behaviour, Mode choice, Mobility culture, Typology of cities, Factor analysis, Cluster analysis


Comparisons of cities are frequently used to evaluate urban transportation planning and policies. A typology of cities can contribute to adequately interpret the identified differences between cities. For this purpose, this paper collects 27 indicators of socio-economic characteristics, spatial structures, travel behaviour and the evaluation of local transport situation for 44 major German cities. We generate clusters of cities based on a factor and cluster analysis. The factor analysis identifies five latent variables called metropolitan character, bicycle-friendliness, affluence, influence of students, and private car orientation. The subsequent cluster analysis identifies five clusters. According to this typology, most cities that are considered good practices of urban transport policy in Germany belong either to the cluster of metropolitan cities or university cities with a cycling-friendly environment.


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Research Article

How to Cite

Holz-Rau C, Heyer R, Schultewolter M, Aertker J, Wachter I, Klinger T. A transport typology of major German cities. RuR [Internet]. 2021 Nov. 16 [cited 2024 Jun. 15];80(2). Available from:


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