Cities with best access to public transportation
Credit: Bernard Jaubert/Getty Images

A new study by the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy found that Paris is city most accessible via public transit.

The institute looked at the number of residents who live a short walking distance to rapid transit across 26 major cities and their greater metro regions, calculating the number of residents who live within one kilometer—about a 10 to 15-minute walk—from high-quality rapid transit options.

In Paris, 100 percent of residents live within one kilometer from public transport.

Cities with best access to public transportation
Credit: Courtesy of ITDP

Other cities that had high percentages include Barcelona (99 percent) and Madrid at (92 percent).

When looking at cities' greater metro regions, however, the numbers wavered. For example, when considering Paris's surrounding regions, only 50 percent of residents were within one kilometer of transit. In the outermost suburbs, that dips as low as 13 percent.

According to Jemilah Magnussan, global communications manager for ITDP, the study shows that while cities may offer easy access to public transportation, the same doesn’t necessarily apply to the city's entire working population, particularly for lower-income individuals who often live in outer suburbs.

Furthermore, the study reveals that while cities continue to expand, their access to public transportation is not necessarily following at the same rate.

10 Most Accessible Cities, According Percentage of Residents Who Live Within 1 Kilometer of Public Transit:

1.Paris, France—100 percent

2. Barcelona, Spain—99 percent

3. Madrid, Spain—92 percent

4. London, England—91 percent

5. Rotterdam, Netherlands—84 percent

6. Seoul, South Korea—83 percent

7. New York City, New York—77 percent

8. Buenos Aires, Argentina—65 percent

9. Boston, Massachusetts—63 percent

10. Beijing (Urban Core), China—60 percent

Cities with best access to public transportation
Credit: Nicolas Thibaut/Getty Images

10 Most Accessible Metro Regions, According Percentage of Residents Who Live Within 1 Kilometer of Public Transit:

1. Barcelona, Spain and Madrid, Spain—76 percent

2. London, England—61 percent

3. Rotterdam, Netherlands—55 percent

4. Paris, France—50 percent

5. Beijing (Municipality), China—46 percent

6. Seoul, South Korea—45 percent

7. Chennai, India—40 percent

8. New York, USA—35 percent

9. Mexico City, Mexico—31 percent

10. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Quito, Ecuador—28 percent

The organization considered the following criteria for high-quality rapid transit: passengers purchase their fare in the station before boarding, transit must have consistent distances between stations not exceeding five kilometers, passengers have a maximum wait of 20 minutes at every station between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., vehicles have their own lanes and a dedicated right of way for bus transit, and tracks must have a dedicated right of way physically separated from street traffic for rail transit.

The full results of the study, this way.