The seminars are supported by the Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning and the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC).
John MacArthur and Aaron Golub
As transit agencies modernize their fare payment systems, opportunities to pay with cash are reduced. This speeds boarding and lowers the cost of operations while also creating new sources of ridership data. Arguably, service is improved for riders as well as payment systems could work across modes, creating a more seamless and simplified experience. Still, about 15% of adults in the United States are without a bank account or credit card account and many rely on restrictive cell-phone data plans or don’t have access to a smartphone. These shares are even higher for public transit users. These un- and under-banked and digitally excluded riders will find it more difficult to conveniently pay their transit fares. This project asks: what steps can be taken to ensure universal access to emerging fare payment systems? This project is exploring and evaluating practices to address these equity issues in cashless fare payment systems. This presentation will discuss the results of the first phases of the project, specifically our three-city survey of transit riders and our cost-benefit framework being developed to evaluate the effectiveness of proposed equity practices.
Speed is a key factor in how people experience Portland’s streets. Appropriate speeds help prevent crashes, reduce the harmful consequences of crashes, and can help streets become more comfortable and sociable spaces that support a variety of travel modes and uses. The Portland Bureau of Transportation will share information on how the City of Portland is supporting safe travel speeds through its Vision Zero work. Topics will include the left turn calming pilot project, speed safety cameras, speed limit reductions, and road reorganizations. Data on the results of these interventions will be shared, along with discussion of next steps for helping people travel at safe speeds in Portland.
Tammy Lee and Kristin A. Tufte
PORTAL provides a centralized, electronic database that facilitates the collection, archiving, and sharing of data and information for public agencies within the region. The data stored in PORTAL includes 20-second granularity loop detector data from freeways in the Portland-Vancouver metropolitan region, arterial signal data, travel time data, weather data, incident data, VAS/VMS message data, truck volumes, transit data, and arterial signal data. Many of these data feeds are received by PORTAL in real time or on a daily basis and for most, the retrieval and archiving process is fully automated.
BikePed Portal: Jurisdictions around the country are collecting non-motorized traffic count data, but the lack of a centralized database inhibits data sharing and greatly reduces the utility of this important and growing dataset. In response, we created a national online non-motorized traffic count archive. This archive allows users to upload, view and download data. Access to a centralized non-motorized traffic data archive opens the door to innovation in research, design, and planning.
Vision Zero was adopted unanimously by Portland City Council in 2015 with the goal of eliminating traffic deaths and serious injuries on Portland streets in a way that is equitable, accountable, and data-driven. But what does it mean to be data-driven? And should we stop there?
In this presentation, learn how Portland’s Vision Zero Action Plan was developed and how the Vision Zero team is using data to move into a future where all Portlanders can travel safely, regardless of the travel mode they use. Explore the datasets used in Vision Zero implementation and the challenges that come with them. Learn about the projects where creativity and innovation play a critical role by stretching beyond what is traditionally thought of as transportation safety, including automated enforcement and citywide crash analysis.
Prior studies show that transit-oriented developments (TODs) increase property values and raise property tax revenue. Property owners reap economic benefit from TODs and public officials use it as evidence to justify the high cost of rail transit. However, renters, who rely on transit more than homeowners, may have to pay higher rent to live in TODs. The location affordability index at the neighborhood level suggests that renters can also benefit from TOD by saving money on transportation costs. Recent studies at the individual level, however, found little evidence that living in TODs reduces transportation expenditure. Using rental data scraped from Craigslist listings and travel data from 2010-12 California Household Travel Survey, this ongoing study contributes to this debate by quantifying and comparing the rental premium and transportation-cost saving for renters in TODs in eight Californian metropolitan areas. To address the potential self-selection bias, I estimate propensity score to match renters in TODs with similar renters outside of TODs. The findings from this study will inform transportation planning and practice that aim to promote more equitable TODs.
Derek Abe and Jesse Stemmier
This seminar is brought to you by the Oregon chapter of the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals (APBP), with support from TREC at Portland State.
Transit stops and stations are a confluence of complementary and competing activities - pedestrians accessing businesses, passengers boarding and alighting, and bicyclists zipping through to their destinations. People are moving in different directions, at different speeds, and need to be able to navigate this space safely and comfortably. A common point of conflict is the bus/bicycle interaction when a transit stop is adjacent to a bike lane. Designs for integrating pedestrian and bicycle facilities at high demand transit stops have advanced over the last decade, but often involve costly infrastructure which require generous right-of-way space, significant streetscape reconfiguration and/or expensive property acquisitions.
TriMet, in coordination with Alta Planning and Design, WSP, PIVOT Architecture and regional stakeholders developed a new station area typology for constrained locations along the Division Street corridor in Portland, OR as a part of the Division Transit Project (DTP) - the city’s first Bus Rapid Transit project. The team’s goal was to develop a concept that could be tested and applied across the corridor, connecting sidewalks and protected bike lanes, in an intuitive, safe station environment.
In the first session of the Spring term, Jesse Stemmler of TriMet and Derek Abe of Alta Planning + Design will be kicking off a joint presentation with the Oregon Chapter of the Association of Bicycle and Pedestrian Professionals (APBP) on their design process and outcomes toward the development of the new integrated station area typology.
Fiona Cundy and Patrick Sweeney
The Southwest Corridor Light Rail Project is an expansion of the MAX light rail system into Southwest Portland, Tigard and Tualatin. Not only will the project add 11 miles of light rail track and 13 stations to the system, it also includes new bicycle facilities, sidewalks, safer crossings, improvements to local bus service, and significant upgrades to stormwater treatment infrastructure. As a cooperative effort between regional partners, the project is seen as a catalyst to help realize broader shared goals of fostering equitable communities, ensuring healthy environments, and providing robust mobility options for all modes. Currently in the planning and environmental review process, the project expects to start early construction in 2022 with service beginning in 2027.
This presentation will provide an overview of the partnerships, funding, conceptual design, and benefits of the project. It will explain the project’s guiding principles and walk through how the preliminary designs of station areas, structures, and other key corridor elements help achieve these goals.
Katherine Keeling and Gabby Abou-Zeid
Double Feature: E-Grocery Home Delivery and the Freight & Travel Demands of Multifamily Dwellings
E-Grocery Home Delivery Impacts on Food Access and Equity
The adoption of e-grocery home delivery (HD) has the potential to change social norms of acquiring household foods and necessities. In light of recent interest in food deserts, a case study of Portland, OR reviews the new elements of inclusion, exclusion, and value created by the service of four major e-grocery businesses: Shipt, Instacart, Walmart, and Amazon Prime Now. These e-grocers are reviewed in terms of service areas, pricing, and inventory choice, as these are key factors on consumer experience. An equity matrix developed by the City of Portland is also applied. It is important to note that e-grocery service areas are rapidly changing, however a July 2019 coverage analysis found that at least 94% of residents in the Portland metropolitan statistical area have access to HD from at least one retailer. A total of 22 census tracts identified as low-income, low-access (LILA) by the USDA which house 91% of the LILA population in the region were included in an e-grocery HD service area. E-grocery home delivery is discussed with attention to vulnerable population groups that may experience barriers to adoption, as well as vulnerable populations that may benefit. Additionally, we discuss ancillary issues such as the challenges faced by delivery drivers.
A Preliminary Overview of Freight and Travel Demand at Multifamily Apartment Buildings in Portland, OR
Trip generation—derived estimates of person and vehicle travel to and from a site—is traditionally the first step of transportation impact analyses for new development. There is growing concern about the suitability of industry-standard trip generation methods and data to adequately capture elements for current and future planning needs. Simultaneously, the line between freight and passenger travel is increasingly blurred, as a variety of goods and services are available for quick and cheap delivery, especially in highly urban contexts. The rise of e-commerce and availability of non-auto modes call for development of a new framework to evaluate new development. To contribute to this effort, person and motorized vehicle counts at 12 multifamily apartment buildings in Portland, OR were collected using industry standard methods. Surveys of residents, delivery personnel, and visitors to each site allowed for collection of additional information on mode, freight demand, and freight delivery making. Preliminary findings show that off-site vehicle trips – not typically captured in trip generation – make up a substantial portion of daily trip-making. Peak periods for person trip-making overall appear opposite those for deliveries to the sites. Next steps for research are outlined and insight for future data collection efforts is offered.
Jennifer Dill, John MacArthur, and Nathan McNeil
This seminar includes two presentations: Bicycling and Bikeshare Among Women of Color in Three U.S. Cities: Barriers and Opportunities, by Jennifer Dill and Adaptive Bikeshare: Expanding Bikeshare to People with Disabilities and Older Adults, by John MacArthur and Nathan McNeil.
Bicycling and Bikeshare Among Women of Color in Three U.S. Cities: Barriers and Opportunities:
Bike share programs in the U.S. have been criticized because they have been used more by men, younger, white, and higher-income people. At the same time, most large U.S. cities experience a gender gap in bicycling. This presentation examines the barriers to and motivations for both bicycling and bike share use among women of color, using survey data from neighborhoods in Philadelphia, PA, Brooklyn, NY, and Chicago, IL. It will examine differences between women of color, white women, white men, and men of color to understand motivations and barriers. The research found that women of color were significantly less likely to ride a bicycle for transportation in the past week, have ridden a bicycle at all in the past 12 months, know how to ride a bicycle, be interested in bicycling more, have used bikeshare, or be a member of bikeshare compared to most groups. The differences persisted even after controlling for income, age, education, bicycle ownership, and knowing how to ride a bike, confirming the need to consider the intersection of race and gender when examining bicycling behavior. The presentation will examine the factors that help explain these differences and the opportunities for practice.
Adaptive Bikeshare: Expanding Bikeshare to People with Disabilities and Older Adults
Bike share systems are expanding efforts to be more equitable and accessible to everyone by offering adaptive bicycle options to people who might otherwise be unable to ride. These systems tend to range from the inclusion of electric bikes and standard trikes into the existing systems to offering a more full-range of adaptive bicycle options for use at rental location. This presentation will document the current state of adaptive bike share as a concept and as a programmatic activity using several diverse primary data sources. Surveys of residents living in several low-income communities of color are used to explore the potential need for adaptive bike share options in urban locations. A national survey of cities and bike share operators is used to document the prevalence and basic models of adaptive bike share programming currently in place. Interviews conducted with bike share representatives in select cities with adaptive bike share programs provide context and details on how specific programs operate. Finally, interviews with adaptive bike share participants in Portland help to illuminate users’ experiences, including the perceived value and potential improvements for adaptive bike share. We found that there is an underserved market of people who do not feel they can use existing bike share systems because of some type of physical limitation but that reaching and serving those people presents substantial hurdles. Current bike share systems are slowly exploring the right way to include accessible options but are challenged by cost, resources, bicycle types, program implementation and infrastructure.
E-commerce is growing—it is estimated that e-commerce sales now account for more than 10% of total retail sales in the U.S. The continued maturation of the e-commerce market is fueling a significant growth in warehousing, changing the nature of brick-and-mortar retail, and creating a surge in parcel volumes, which means deliveries are up. Way up. The New York Times recently reported that 1.5 million packages are delivered daily in New York City. In order to meet this demand for delivery, businesses are looking for new and creative ways to deliver packages to consumers, including attempting to automate the last mile. What does this growth in e-commerce and urban freight mean for our transportation system? What are the land use implications? What kinds of strategies are being employed to manage the influx of deliveries? This seminar will explore these questions, as well as touch on local research efforts to better understand urban freight trip generation.
Seattle is experiencing transformational changes with record-breaking population growth among large scale urban renewal and redevelopment. These changes are occurring in a constrained transportation system that is being reconfigured to meet the mobility needs of vibrant and thriving community. Learn about the policies that provide the roadmap for managing City’s growth, plans that guide where transportation investments are made, and how Seattle will reach the safety goals of Vision Zero.
It has been more than two years since shared scooters first appeared in Santa Monica, California and more than four years since the first dockless bikeshare bikes appeared in China. As shared micromobility has experimented in its deployment and operations across the globe, cities have also been experimenting with ways to regulate and manage this phenomenon in a way that best achieves public outcomes. But how do we best protect individual rights' while still protecting the right-of-way? This seminar will discuss experiences from cities with micromobility programs and considerations for agency staff and elected officials when launching and overseeing a program, including: data sharing and privacy, goal setting, approval approach, equity targets, caps, fees, safety, and approaches for minimizing negative impacts.
Mike Coleman and Sean Loughran
If you like PDX now, wait till you see PDX Next. We’re outgrowing our current digs. In the coming years, we expect our annual passengers to jump from 20 million to 35 million. Over the next five years, a series of transformative projects will bring more Pacific Northwest-inspired architecture, local restaurants and shops, inclusive design, and carbon footprint-reducing technology. We’re rolling out a series of improvements over the next few years so that your trip to and from PDX is easier and speedier. We’re making space for light-rail and bike-path enhancements. A dedicated ride hailing pickup area will streamline the entire experience. A new flexible transit hub will add close-in parking spots and bring all car rentals on-site. Among the largest projects in the airport’s history, the iconic new terminal will double the size of the current ticketing and lobby area when it opens. This cornerstone project will give us the flexibility to meet the demands of the future, all while capturing the signature spirit of the Pacific Northwest and keeping the heart and soul of PDX intact.
Portland's neighborhood greenways are a key component of the city's transportation system and future. Join PBOT's new neighborhood greenway coordinator to learn how this facility type developed, near-term plans for improvements, and what the future holds for these unique bikeways.
Participants will gain a better understanding of:
- The history of Portland's neighborhood greenways
- PBOT's evaluation process for the neighborhood greenway system
- Where the system is thriving and where PBOT sees deficiencies
- How PBOT plans to address the system's development over the next three to five years
Congestion pricing is effective, and efficient, but is it fair? One of the biggest concerns surrounding dynamic road charges is that they will harm low-income people. This seminar examines the equity implications of congestion charging, and argues that road pricing can satisfy the demands of both equity and efficiency.
Lack of physical activity is well established as a modifiable risk factor for cancer at multiple sites. Because walking (and rolling) are among the most common forms of physical activity in the United States, the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences of the US National Cancer Institute has supported a range of data resources, methods research and development and funding opportunities related to physical activity and cancer control across the entire cancer control continuum. In this seminar, Dr. Berrigan will share about emerging results from the 2015 National Health Interview Survey Walking and Perceptions of the Walking Environment Module, resources and data related to youth physical activity including results from the FLASHE and NHTS surveys and new tools for teaching and measurement supported by NCI. Together these materials will help expand transportation researcher and practitioner knowledge of links between physical activity and cancer as well a variety of research results and resources.
While the overarching objective of the transportation system is to provide mobility, it should be developed and operated under the framework of a safe system with the aspirational goal to establish a system on which no road user can be severely or fatally injured. To accomplish such a safe system, it is necessary to effectively harness all the core protective opportunities provided by the system. This includes the street design and operations, user behavior, vehicle design, protection systems, and EMS. The common thread across these layers is speed. This is directly driven by the quadratic relationship between velocity and kinetic energy, and the necessity to provide safe and structured dispersion of kinetic energy at the onset of a safety-critical event. The presentation will describe ongoing research that examines what happens when we no longer design each of the individual safety components to provide a desirable level of protection for a certain circumstance, but that it can contribute to a larger joint entity (i.e., the system) and can exhibit the required level of safety.
From Complete Streets policy implementation to stronger community engagement, bus rapid transit expansion to waterfront redevelopment—and so much more!—Vancouver, Washington, is on the move. Directly across the river from Portland, Oregon, the City of Vancouver serves as the southern gateway to Washington State; the City encompasses over 50 square miles, and, with a population of nearly 185,000, Vancouver is the fourth largest city in Washington (behind Seattle, Spokane, and Tacoma and just ahead of Bellevue). As Vancouver embarks on an update to the 15-year-old Transportation System Plan, learn about how the City is striving to transform the existing transportation system through more collaborative programs and more efficient measures. Smaller and suburban cities face unique challenges in growing metropolitan areas with economic and demographic shifts—and these communities must balance multiple, sometimes differing, expectations that the transportation system will provide everyone with an excellent level of service. In the changing landscape of ever-improving mobility options, advancing technology, and evolving best practices, find out how Vancouver is working to ensure that the transportation system operates as safely, efficiently, and innovatively as possible.
The Community Cycling Center has been working with youth through the "Big Jump: Gateway to Opportunity" project. We'll be discussing our exploratory educational model and the ways the project can increase accessibility and opportunity for the youth living and learning in the Gateway neighborhoods.
The Datafication of Cycling – Effects and Opportunities at the Intersection of Industry and Transport Policy
This seminar will provide a brief overview to Shaun Williams’ "Datafication of Cycling" PhD project. The main aim is to understand how volunteered app data, provided by cyclists, are used to inform transportation planning practice and policy. There is an emerging body of academic work calling for digital aspects of cycling – such as app data - to be considered by transportation authorities. This project builds upon these contributions and asks: Are new forms of cycling data contributing to increased cycling provision and infrastructure? The Datafication of Cycling Project runs from 2017 – 2021 and includes visits to Portland (Oregon) and Copenhagen (Denmark). If you would like to find out more about the project, or to get involved, please feel free to contact Shaun directly: email@example.com.
Gabe Graff and Kelly Betteridge
Over the past two years, the Portland Bureau of Transportation and TriMet have joined forces to identify, design and build capital and operational treatments to help buses move more quickly and reliably through Portland’s increasingly congested Central City. Already the densest concentration of people and jobs in Oregon, Portland’s Central City is growing fast and increasing the speed and reliability of transit is key to achieving our City and region’s transportation, climate and livability goals. Working in partnership on PBOT’s Central City in Motion plan and TriMet and Metro’s Enhanced Transit Corridor program, the two agencies have identified a series of bus lanes in the Central City that will make transit faster and more reliable throughout the region. Project staff will discuss how projects were identified and trade-offs weighed, share the most recent designs, and discuss the benefits to transit riders and the region, with a focus on approaches to the Hawthorne, Steel and Burnside bridges.
Modes including ridehailing, bikeshare, and e-scooters offer the potential to revolutionize how people travel. But as cities and agencies work to integrate these new services into the existing transportation landscape, the equity implications of these modes remain murky.
This talk presents research on ridehail travel and equity from Los Angeles and compares the equity outcomes of ridehailing to the previous status quo embodied by taxis. The research highlights both the promise of new mobility services and the remaining obstacles to delivering equitable access. Findings yields implications for policies that cities and planners can advance to ensure that new travel modes boost mobility for all, not just some, travelers.
Andrew H. Aebi
The planning process identifies community needs but often needs the creative use of financial leverage to make those projects a reality on the ground. Timing is important on Local Improvement District (LIDs), and the window of opportunity is often short.
For Portland's Bureau of Transportation, managing the public's desire for streets in good condition with room to walk and bike safely and accommodating freight movement and population growth can be a tall order. Add in the need to work with water, sewer and underground utilities, and things get complicated.
When needs exceed resources, smart strategies can help fill the gap. Andrew Aebi, Portland’s LID Administrator, will discuss four LID projects which will provide better walking and biking options for residents, improve infrastructure, and support smart land use for Portland's growing population. Most importantly, he will describe how creative problem-solving and careful negotiation can successfully achieve commitments to fund the projects and improve neighborhoods.
Gonçalo H. A. Correia
Automated driving has become a hot topic of research in different fields of science. Despite the great advancements in the vehicle technology itself, researchers are now concerned in figuring out what will be the impacts of these vehicles in life as we know it. These impacts can be rather broad from traffic safety to the economy. In this lecture, Goncalo will focus on the research that is being done at TU Delft, a leading university in automated vehicles’ (AVs) impacts research, focusing on urban areas and how mobility, and even the city itself, can change with fully-automated vehicles. Goncalo Correia will be covering impacts on the value of travel time, traffic congestion, land use, among others. This is work in progress that requires the involvement of all researchers interested in the topic, thus, in that sense, the lecture is intended more to foster research questions and methods than on giving final answers, which are still a bit far away.
Alexander Y. Bigazzi
Are the Biketown bikes too heavy? Does better gear motivate people to cycle more? How much faster will someone go on an e-bike?
Although urban cycling is widely known as physically active transportation, the actual physics of cycling have been given little attention in transportation engineering and planning. In contrast, the field of sports science has developed detailed data and models of road bicycle performance, but only for sport and racing cyclists.
What can we learn about utilitarian cycling by integrating knowledge of the physical attributes of bicycles and cyclists?
This seminar examines the ways in which bicycle physics, and the physiology of cyclists, can influence outcomes of interest to transportation professionals, from speed and stopping distance to cycling frequency and health benefits. Findings will be presented from recent and ongoing studies aiming to quantify these relationships and enhance travel analysis tools with an understanding of the physical aspects of cycling.