The performance of nodes, small downtowns, and corridors is measured against different points of comparison: the present or former municipality, urban zone, or metropolitan region in which the study areas are located, and two highway-oriented business parks chosen to represent conventional suburban employment areas. Although a study area in its own right, downtown Toronto also serves as a benchmark against which other study areas are profiled.
The analysis begins with an investigation of social and economic trends in the nodes: demographic changes, the socioeconomic profile of residents, and the evolution and nature of employment. The purpose of this part of the analysis is to determine who lives in nodes, what kinds of jobs are available in nodes, and what these findings suggest about kinds of households and businesses attracted to different kinds of nodes and why.
The remainder of Part Two investigates land use in the study areas (density and morphology) and the impact of these land use patterns on travel behaviour. The purpose of this part of the analysis is to clarify the variations among the different categories of nodes and identify obstacles to meeting their objectives, particularly at the micro and meso scales.
The data analyzed in this study come from different sources. Land use information derives from measurements performed on digitized aerial photographs (see Appendix C). Census data are used to gauge density, demographic change, the amount and types of occupations present in the study areas, and the socioeconomic status of area residents (see Appendixes A and B). The socioeconomic information serves to determine the effects of different factors of attraction (lifestyle versus affordability) on residential location choices made by households living in the study areas. It also points to future strategies promoting the residential development of UGCs.
Data on trips to the different areas selected in this study and on home-based trips made by study area residents come from the Transportation Tomorrow Survey (see Appendix D). Apart from some time series and built environment measurements, all data originate from the 2001 census or the 2001 Transportation Tomorrow Survey. Results from a 1999 survey of workers in offices in three of the large nodes (North York Centre, Scarborough Town Centre and Mississauga City Centre) are used to determine the level of internal capture prevailing within these nodes, that is, the extent to which office workers use the facilities in the nodes (Filion, 2001). The survey also gauged the modal shares of the trips these employees made within the node, as well as their intra-nodal shopping and eating habits. Finally, data on the evolution of office floor space, used to assess the capacity of study areas to attract office employment, originate from surveys carried out by Altus InSite, Inc.
Throughout this part of the report, study areas are compared to each other and to averages from their respective present or former municipality: the Kitchener CMA for downtown Kitchener, the Town of Oakville for downtown Oakville, the City of Mississauga for Mississauga City Centre and the Mississauga East corridor, the former City of North York for North York Centre, and the former City of Scarborough for Scarborough Town Centre. Measurements from Yonge-Eglinton, downtown Toronto, and the Yonge Street corridor are related to those of their urban zone, the inner city composed of the former cities of Toronto, York, and East York. As defined here, the "inner city" corresponds generally to the portion of the metropolitan region built before 1946.
A thorny methodological issue concerns the extent of the areas under study. This problem and the methods used to resolve it for the purposes of this report are described in Appendixes A and B.