With worsening congestion, travel time reliability is increasingly becoming as critical as average travel times in affecting travel choices. Researchers from Portland State University (PSU) partnered with Washington County, Oregon to offer data-driven strategies in prioritizing funding for travel time reliability improvements on their urban arterials. The vast majority of existing research on travel time reliability has focused exclusively on freeways. Avinash Unnikrishnan, Sirisha Kothuri and Jason C. Anderson leveraged Bluetooth sensors provided and deployed by Bluemac Analytics to identify problem areas in the county. Set up at intersections throughout Washington County, the sensors are able to calculate travel time from one intersection to another by matching Bluetooth signals from devices in people's cars. The researchers evaluated the Bluetooth travel time data to understand the temporal variation in travel time reliability metrics on these urban arterials, including factors related to time of day, weather, and holidays. They also provided the County with an automated process to clean up their data and remove outliers.
The researchers determined that Tualatin-Sherwood Road has the lowest travel time reliability of the three corridors. Now that Tualatin-Sherwood Road has been identified as having the most unreliable travel times out of the three arterials studied, the County is in a position to focus its efforts in that area. This work sets the groundwork for future work of identifying corridors with high unreliability, thus enabling transportation system engineers to prioritize funding in projects. This webinar will provide an overview of the project, its findings and methodology, and key takeaways for transportation engineers and policymakers.
This webinar is based on a study funded by the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) and conducted at Portland State University. Read more about the NITC research: Exiting the Freeway: Travel Time Reliability on Urban Arterials.
Christopher Monsere and Nathan McNeil
Separated bike lanes have become increasingly common around the United States as cities seek to attract the new riders, including people who want to ride but limit their riding because they do not feel comfortable riding with motor vehicle traffic. Planners and engineers are working to identify contextually appropriate, safe, and comfortable designs for intersection locations, where bicyclist paths cross the paths of turning vehicles as well as cross-traffic. This research employed a combination of user surveys and simulations to anticipate expected bicyclist and turning vehicle interactions and bicyclist comfort based on design type and volumes. Findings examine which types of intersection designs, ranging from protected intersection and bike signals to mixing zones, are most comfortable for a range of cyclists, while taking into account expected motor vehicle traffic. This project will provide valuable information to cities as they seek to include comfort-based factors into design selection criteria – an endeavor that may be essential to attracting the coveted Interested but Concerned riders.
Xiaoyue Cathy Liu
This webinar will present an open-source socio-transportation analytic toolbox (STAT) for public transit system planning. This webinar will consist of a demonstration of the STAT toolbox, for the primary purpose of getting feedback from transit agencies on the tool's usefulness. We are especially interested in hearing about any improvements that would aid transit agencies in implementing it.
The STAT toolbox was created in an effort to integrate social media and general transit feed specification (GTFS) data for transit agencies, to aid in evaluating and enhancing the performance of public transit systems. The toolbox enables the integration, analysis, and visualization of two major new open transportation data sources—social media and GTFS data—to support transit decision making. In this webinar, we will introduce how we leveraged machine learning and natural language processing techniques to retrieve Twitter data related to public transit systems and to extract sentence structures to geomap those tweets to their corresponding transit lines/stations. Combined with transit accessibility measures computed using GTFS, STAT is able to identify the mismatch between the services that the agency is providing and what the transit users are experiencing. The project uses Salt Lake City and Portland as case studies to demonstrate the usability of the toolbox and how it can support querying, navigating, and exploring the interactions between transit users and services.
The Social-Transportation Analytic Toolbox (STAT) for Transit Networks final report is available online: https://doi.org/10.15760/trec.229
Alan Kenneth DeLaTorre, Ivis Garcia Zambrana, and Ja Young Kim
Aging in place can simply be defined as staying in your home as you age; aging in place concerns include mobility, social activities, safety, accessibility, and long term supports and services in one’s neighborhood and society. In order to facilitate aging in place, organizations in Salt Lake County, Utah and the City of Portland, Oregon, provided home modifications to income-qualified older adults that intended to enable aging in place. Such modifications alter individuals’ life-space mobility – a concept recently used by gerontologists and that we introduced to planners – from within one’s home to the broader community. A unique methodological approach taken by researchers merged several existing data collection instruments with additional interview questions of residents who recently received home modifications.
The final report is available here: https://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/29182
Today’s youth are tomorrow’s riders, bikers, walkers, voters, and transportation planners. As more transit agencies begin to offer free fare passes to public middle and high school students, it is important to have good communication strategy in place to encourage transit usage so they don't miss out on the potential to affect behavior change.
Thus, transit agencies need to develop age-appropriate messaging strategies and tactics that promote youth car-free mobility.
This webinar will present results from a NITC research project that sought to create and evaluate communication messaging that fosters more positive attitudes, intentions, and behaviors related to transit and other car-free transportation options among Portland youth. While there is no "one size fits all" approach, the Portland-based findings may yield insights that could be adapted for application in other regions.
John MacArthur and Sergio Lopez
Electric bicycle (e-bike) use is a rising phenomenon in North America. In 2018, John MacArthur of Portland State University conducted a national survey to understand issues facing e-bike owners. Reducing physical exertion, conquering challenging topography and replacing car trips are a few of the most important reasons for buying an e-bike. The electric assist of the e-bike helps to generate more trips, longer trips and different types of bicycle trips. Through analysis it also became evident that e-bikes are making it possible for more people to ride a bicycle, many of whom are incapable of riding a standard bicycle or don’t feel safe doing so.
In 2017, Forth launched the Community Electric Bike Project, which was designed to test the benefits of e-bikes for individuals who live in underserved communities and lack access to frequent transit services in Portland, Oregon. In partnership with the Community Cycling Center and GenZe, the project aimed to serve individuals who sought another mode of transportation. Forth hoped that this project would bring more light mobility transportation options into underserved neighborhoods. Sergio Lopez of Forth will share the full report of what the project achieved within the Portland community.
Marc Schlossberg and Roger Lindgren
There is a growing demand for better infrastructure and fewer barriers to biking and other forms of space-efficient micromobility. Tackling daily trips by bike is easier on the environment, healthier for users and non-users alike, uses precious urbanized public and private land more efficiently, costs taxpayers less to build and maintain infrastructure, and when routes are safe and comfortable, moving by bike is also fun! Complete Streets policies are being adopted across the country, and there is an active conversation around the safety imperative of a Complete Streets approach. Yet, local officials often need both design guidance and the confidence on how to retrofit streets for people on bikes that will actually work.
To fill this gap, an interdisciplinary team of NITC researchers, including Marc Schlossberg and John Rowell of the University of Oregon, Roger Lindgren of the Oregon Institute of Technology, and Dave Amos of UC Berkeley (behind the popular City Beautiful video series) created this new public resource. Rather than using hypothetical designs or artistic renderings, the team showcases proven, high-quality, completed projects from a diversity of communities and contexts and does so in a visual way that can help communicate to a diverse set of stakeholders in any community. This new guide was funded by the National Institute for Transportation and Communities, and is now available for FREE download, in full or by chapter.
Search #DriverNotCar or #CrashNotAccident on Twitter and you’ll find a vigorous discussion about the power of word choices to shape our understanding of what happens on the street and who’s responsible. When we directly examine and discuss the language we use, we acknowledge its power both to reflect existing attitudes and to shape developing attitudes. This presentation will uncover embedded biases or assumptions in common transportation terminology and provide tips and tools to help us broaden our inclusion of everyone we are supposed to serve as transportation professionals.
Xianfeng Terry Yang
Although connected vehicles (CVs) will soon go beyond testbeds, CVs and human-driven vehicles (HVs) will co-exist over a long period. Hence, it is critical to consider the interactions between these two types of vehicles in traffic flow modeling. In this study, we aim to develop a macroscopic model to understand how CVs would impact HVs in the traffic stream. Grounded on the second-order traffic flow model, we study the relationships among flow, density, and speed by two sets of formulations for the groups of CVs and HVs, respectively. A set of friction factors, which indicate CVs' impact to HVs, are introduced to the speed equation for accounting CV speed impacts. Then extended Kalman Filter is employed to update both model parameters and friction factors in real-time. By using CVs trajectory data as measurements, the difference between CV average speed and overall traffic mean speed will be fully accounted. The proposed model will serve as a basis for designing CV-based traffic control function, such as speed harmonization, on highways.
This webinar is based on a study funded by the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) and conducted at the University of Utah. Read more about the research: Vehicle Sensor Data (VSD) Based Traffic Control in Connected Automated Vehicle (CAV) Environment.
Philip L. Winters and Amy Lester
Social marketing seeks to develop and integrate marketing concepts with other approaches to influence behaviors that benefit individuals and communities for the greater social good. It is a useful transportation demand management (TDM) planning approach to promote travel behavior change. The purpose of this study was to explore a consumer market segmentation technique successfully used in Europe for its applicability to marketing efforts in the United States. Attitudinal and demographic data were collected from 1900 individuals in Florida, Oregon, and Virginia modeled after the European approach. Clustering analysis was applied to divide the sample into segments so that members of the same group share similar attitudes. These include attitudes about various modes, car use, and congestion and environment. A classification model was built to predict group membership. The most stable and distinctive segmentation resulted in 7 segments. From this list of over 100 attitudinal questions, 17 questions were found to separate segments most significantly and predict group membership with high level of accuracy. Attitudinal profiles for each group were developed based on thee mean responses to these “golden questions”. This webinar will discuss the method and results.
There is nationwide interest in supporting sustainable and active transportation modes such as bicycling and walking due to the many benefits associated with them, including reduced congestion, lower emissions and improved health. Although the number of bicyclists is increasing, safety remains a top concern. In urban areas, a common crash type involving bicycles at intersections is the “right hook” where a right-turning vehicle collides with a through bicyclist. While geometric treatments and pavement markings have been studied, there is a lack of research on signal timing treatments to address right-hook bicycle-vehicle conflicts.
Addressing Bicycle-Vehicle Conflicts with Alternate Signal Control Strategies, published in April 2018, is the first study to explore bicycle signal control strategies for addressing bicycle-vehicle conflicts. This study analyzed the operational impacts of traditional concurrent phasing, leading bike intervals (LBI), split leading bike intervals, and exclusive bike phasing in a microsimulation environment, and explored the safety impacts of traditional concurrent phasing, leading bike intervals, split leading bike intervals, and mixing zones using video-based conflict analysis. The microsimulation analysis revealed increased delays due to LBI, split LBI and exclusive bike phasing for the affected motor vehicle phases compared to traditional concurrent phasing. Using post-encroachment time (PET), a surrogate safety measure, conflicts between turning vehicles and bicyclists were investigated. While the split LBI treatment was useful in mitigating conflicts during the lead interval, the risk for bicyclists is shifted to the stale green portion of the phase. No correlations were found between the frequency of conflicts and elapsed time since green. With the mixing zone treatment, significant confusion was exhibited by both cyclists and drivers, with respect to the correct action to be taken.
Observation also revealed that a significant percentage of the vehicles merged into the mixing zone at the very last second, thus adding to the confusion. This study provides broad-based recommendations on the appropriate treatment to be implemented to reduce right-hook conflicts.
Eryn Kehe and Wendy Serrano
This webinar will provide practical tools for designing effective and authentic community engagement for transportation projects. Too often, we can forget to ask ourselves who, what and why for our engagement processes. Authentic community engagement requires us to think through exactly why we need to involve the public, how they can influence project decisions and who the most impacted people may be. This session will walk you through the steps to plan a unique engagement approach for each project and share examples of what can happen when these tools are used correctly and what can go wrong when they are not.
KEY LEARNING TAKEAWAYS
These three important steps will make your community engagement more authentic and effective:
- Identifying your audience. This is the first step because you can’t know how to reach people until you know which people you want to reach.
- Developing goals and a strategy. You need a clear goal for your outreach. Understand why you need engagement and how that engagement will (or won’t) impact upcoming decisions, and use that to build a goal for what you want to achieve with your outreach. Your strategy is just a plan for activities to achieve your goal(s).
- Meeting people where they are. Once you understand who you want to engage, why you are engaging them and how what you learn will be part of the decision-making process, you are ready to plan some activities/events. Understand your audience and figure out how to engage them the way they want to be engagement. This will make your activities most successful. Engagement should be easy, comfortable, safe, and if possible, fun.
Sean J. Barbeau and Derek Fretheim
Every day transit riders ask the same question: when’s the next one coming? To answer this question, transit agencies are transitioning to providing real-time transit information through smartphones or displayed at transit stops.
The proliferation of transit planning and real time arrival tools that have hit the market over the past decade is staggering. Yet with transit ridership on the decline, agencies can’t afford to ignore the importance of providing accurate, real time information to their customers. Real-time transit information improves the reliability and efficiency of passenger travel, but barriers have prevented some transit agencies from adopting the GTFSrealtime v1.0 technology. A new NITC-funded study in May led by Sean Barbeau of the University of South Florida seeks to remove some of these barriers to make real-time transit info a universal amenity. As a public agency partner, moovel focuses on delivering simple, frictionless and accurate information through mobile applications. From mobile ticketing to multi/intermodal trip planning, booking and payment, moovel’s mobile apps take a customer-first approach to enhance the customer experience through an intuitive mobile solution.
This webinar will discuss the lessons learned from using GTFS and GTFS-realtime data in real-world applications and how these experiences lead to the development of the GTFS Best Practices (http://gtfs.org/best-practices/), GTFS-realtime v2.0 (https://developers.google.com/transit/gtfs-realtime/), and the open-source GTFS-realtime Validator tool (https://github.com/CUTR-at-USF/gtfs-realtime-validator). These new tools and standards will help reduce the time needed to develop, test, deploy, and maintain GTFS and GTFS-realtime feeds, which will in turn lead to better quality real-time information for transit riders and better operational and analytics information for transit agencies going forward. The presentation will also discuss the challenges and experiences faced by moovel as a vendor in working with agency data to meet modern, customer expectations in delivering accurate, real-time transportation data.
KEY LEARNING OUTCOMES
- Understanding of how customer expectations shape the delivery of information/data
- Understanding of how transit agencies and their vendors can follow GTFS Best Practices and use the new GTFS-realtime v2.0 specification when implementing and maintaining data feeds, including putting in RFP requirements
- Challenges of working with multiple transportation providers to provide accurate real-time information
- Lessons learned from numerous focus groups and feedback studies
- Learn how to run the GTFS-realtime Validator tool on data regularly to maintain high-quality feeds
- Where the future of smart apps will take us and how we need to prepare for it
Roger Lindgren and Jordan Preston
Vehicle operating dynamics data have a fundamental impact on the design of roadways, but collecting this type of data is not part of your typical college curriculum. Instead, engineering students are handed a textbook, leaving them without a firsthand experience of how accelerations and decelerations “feel” to the driver, the ultimate consumer of their designs. Seeking to change this norm, Roger Lindgren and C.J. Riley, civil engineering professors at the Oregon Institute of Technology, undertook a NITC education project to incorporate more real-world data collection and analysis into transportation courses. This webinar will offer a detailed look at the recently published project "Instructional Modules for Obtaining Vehicle Dynamics Data with Smartphone Sensors" and how you can implement it into your coursework.
Webinar: Tools and Techniques for Teaching Collaborative Regional Planning and Enhancing Livability and Sustainable Transportation in Gateway & Natural Amenity Regions
Small towns and cities outside of national parks and other major natural amenities throughout the western United States are becoming increasingly popular places to visit and live. As a result, many of these gateway and natural amenity region (GNAR) communities—including places such as Jackson, Wyoming, and Moab, Utah—are facing a variety of “big city” issues, such as severe congestion, lack of affordable workforce housing, and concerns about sprawl and density. This webinar will introduce the planning and transportation concerns being experienced by GNAR communities throughout the west. It will then share the tools and resources developed by the University of Utah to train planners to work in these unique communities and to help these communities enhance livability and sustainable transportation options. The webinar will also introduce the University of Utah’s new Gateway and Natural Amenity Region Initiative and ongoing research aimed at better understanding and addressing the planning and transportation issues in GNAR communities.
- Many small western communities near major natural amenities, such as national parks, are experiencing “big city” planning and transportation challenges.
- Professional and academic planners need to pay far greater attention to these GNAR communities and to helping them effectively plan for and respond to the planning and transportation challenges they face.
- The University of Utah has developed a range of tools and resources aimed at training planners to work in these communities and assisting these communities in tackling the challenges and opportunities they face. We hope other will use and build on these tools and resources.
- There are considerable opportunities for further research, education, and capacity building efforts aimed at understanding and addressing the transportation and planning needs of GNAR communities.
Hau Hagedorn and Sirisha Kothuri
This project builds on the success of NITC’s first Pooled Fund project that created the first national bicycle and pedestrian traffic count archive, named BikePed Portal. The next step for BikePed Portal is to improve its usability for both data providers and data users, specifically transportation professionals. To improve usability, area transportation planners will be invited to participate in an idea gathering session to help design an “Explore Data Page.” The purpose of this page is to allow transportation planners (data users) ready access to the non-motorized count data available in BikePed Portal in a way that is useful and attractive to them. The page may include graphical displays (maps, graphs, etc.) and/or summary statistics. The work also includes other usability improvements including data quality communication improvements, user interface improvements for data providers, maintenance, adding data to the archive, software testing, spreading the word to potential data users, and inclusion of National Bicycle and Pedestrian Documentation Project (NBPDP) data.
Information session on the Pooled Fund Research Grant
One champion identifies a problem that is common to other agencies, cities, or MPOs and then recruits other partners who are willing to collaborate and contribute financially to the project. At this point, NITC steps in and matches the funds that the partners pooled – making it possible to pursue a question that is greater in scope than any one agency or city could pursue on its own. Simple process, right? Maybe not! Yet, this process can be exciting, empowering and, most importantly, lead to the implementation of a project that produces immediate and impactful outcomes.
Jim Elliott, Janet Barlow, and Dan Goodman
In October 2017 the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) unveiled a groundbreaking new resource on planning and designing shared streets to accommodate people with vision disabilities. The first report of its kind, Accessible Shared Streets: Notable Practices and Considerations for Accommodating Pedestrians with Vision Disabilities (learn more and download the report) / (access the 508 version here) introduces accessible design principles for shared streets based on detailed research and extensive outreach, equipping communities to pursue new designs that are accessible for people with vision disabilities. Drawing from notable practices, public outreach, and field analysis from multiple US cities, this resource pushes the practice of shared street design towards accessibility for all users.
Toole Design Group and Accessible Design for the Blind were part of the team that helped FHWA bring this innovative resource to the public. Join us in hearing from these organizations on how to implement this new resource on your streets.
Webinar: Transportation Benefits of Parking Cash-Out, Pre-Tax Commuter Benefits, and Parking Surtaxes
Allen Greenberg, James Choe, Sonika Sethi, and Colleen Stoll
The vast majority of employers provide their employees free parking at work, which encourages employees to drive alone. Multiple strategies exist to level the playing field between travel modes and allow employees to select the travel option most beneficial to them without suffering a financial penalty. The U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration sponsored a study to understand the effect parking cash out, pre-tax commuter benefits, and parking surtaxes can have on congestion, emissions, and other driving-related externalities. The study is part of the Administration’s ongoing efforts to increase awareness of solutions to address the transportation issues affecting communities in the United States. The research was conducted in coordination with a peer review group made up of representatives from academic institutions and the public sector who provided guidance throughout the study process.
Cash-out programs have the potential to substantially reduce the rate at which people drive alone to work. But, they have not been implemented broadly. California and Rhode Island have parking cash-out laws, but they apply only to a small percentage of parking, and no city (outside of California) has a parking cash-out requirement. Recently, however, several cities, including Washington, DC, New York, and San Francisco have implemented ordinances requiring employers over a specific size to offer pre-tax transit benefits, and similar city-level ordinances related to parking cash out could be considered. This study conducts a city-level analysis to assess the potential impacts of six ordinances:
- a requirement for employers that offer free parking to offer parking cash-out;
- a requirement for employers that offer free parking to offer a tax-exempt commuter benefit (e.g., a transit, vanpool, or bicycle benefit);
- an incentive to offer cash out on a daily basis;
- a requirement for all employers to offer their employees the option to pay for transit and bicycle costs with pre-tax dollars;
- a tax credit incentive for employers to drop the free parking benefit entirely and to offer an alternative tax-exempt commuter benefit; and
- a tax on parking fees for peak-hour commuters.
The study suggests that these policies could result in notable reductions in employee vehicle travel, traffic congestion, and emissions. The webinar will include resources for individuals interested in determining the impact these strategies could have in their own cities/communities.
Kimberly Barsamian Kahn
This webinar discusses research exploring how social identity factors (race and gender) influence drivers’ behavior in interactions with pedestrians at crosswalks. One dangerous potential point of conflict for pedestrians within the transportation system is interactions with drivers at crosswalks (NHTSA, 2009), and racial minorities are disproportionately represented in pedestrian fatalities (CDC, 2013). This project examines whether racial discrimination occurs at crosswalks, which may lead to disparate crossing experiences and disproportionate safety outcomes.
Our initial research on this topic revealed predicted racial bias in drivers’ yielding behavior at crosswalks: Black male pedestrians were passed by twice as many cars as, and waited 32% longer than, White male pedestrians (Goddard, Kahn and Adkins, 2015). A new set of studies expands on these prior findings. A controlled field experiment in which Black and White male and female pedestrians crossed the street at two different types of crosswalks (unmarked vs. marked) was conducted, while trained coders marked drivers’ yielding behavior. Results indicated that overall stopping rates were very low at the unmarked crosswalk, and few differences emerged based on pedestrian race and gender. When the crosswalk became marked, stopping rates greatly increased; however, treatment was less equitable. Drivers were less likely to stop for Black and male pedestrians, and when they did stop, they were more likely to stop closer to Black male and Black female pedestrians. These effects occurred regardless of drivers’ race and gender. In order to better understand African American and Black people’s experiences as pedestrians, three focus groups were conducted. Overall, African American and Black focus group participants perceived that drivers treated them differently based on their race by not stopping or infringing on their space in crosswalks. These negative experiences lead to increased stress and harms their walking trips.
Understanding what impacts drivers’ stopping behavior with pedestrians is an important step toward developing policies that promote safe transportation experiences. Although marking the crosswalk increased drivers’ stopping behavior for pedestrians, it also increased the likelihood of discrimination based on pedestrians’ race and gender. To reduce this disparity in treatment, it is recommended that marked crosswalks include additional markings and/or design to reduce the sense that yielding is discretionary and to increase driver yielding compliance.
- Drivers’ yielding behavior at crosswalks is influenced by pedestrians’ race and gender.
- At unmarked crosswalks, stopping rates were very low and few differences emerged based on pedestrian race and gender.
- At marked crosswalks, drivers were less likely to stop for Black and male pedestrians, and when they did stop, they were more likely to stop closer to Black male and Black female pedestrians at a marked crosswalk.
- African American and Black pedestrians discussed how these are stressful interactions that harm their walking trips.
The final report that the presentation is derived from is available: http://dx.doi.org/10.15760/trec.130
Webinar: The Effects of Demand-Responsive Parking on Transit Usage and Congestion: Evidence from SFpark
Parking is a serious issue in many urban areas, especially those experiencing rapid population growth. To address this problem, some cities have implemented demand-responsive pricing programs, where parking prices vary depending on the occupancy rate in a previous period. Yet, few empirical studies have rigorously evaluated these programs. In this study, we investigate the impacts of SFpark, a demand-responsive pricing parking program in San Francisco that began in 2011. We observe effects on three important aspects of urban transportation: parking availability, transit bus ridership and congestion. The timing of this program is plausibly exogenous to factors that affect these outcomes of interest since it is based on bureaucratic decision-making, so endogeneity is less of a concern.
We use data from the SFpark pilot evaluation for on-street parking, which includes hourly data on parking occupancy, metered rates and measures of daily traffic congestion. Additionally, we generate a novel panel data set using micro-level Muni bus transit data at the bus shift-stop level to observe possible effects on modal transportation choice.
Results show that SFpark achieved its primary goal of increasing parking availability, with more on-street parking meeting the target occupancy range of 60-80%. We also make a novel contribution to the literature by addressing the effect of SFPark on transit usage, and find heterogeneous effects on ridership depending on changes in meter rates. A core component of SFpark is allowing metered rates to fluctuate after a few weeks in response to changes in occupancy rates. We leverage these changes in rates and find a positive relationship between rate changes and bus ridership, where a modest increase (decrease) in meter rates is associated with higher (lower) ridership. To our knowledge, this is the first study to assess this relationship using micro-level transit and detailed parking data. Finally, we find SFpark reduced congestion, specifically decreasing traffic density and increasing vehicle speed. These results have important implications for transportation policy as cities continue to expand and implement demand-responsive pricing programs globally.
Nathan McNeil, Jennifer Dill, and John MacArthur
While the number of public bike share systems in the United States grew considerably in recent years, early evidence indicated that many systems were not serving the diverse populations of cities, particularly lower-income residents and people of color. Lack of bike share stations in neighborhoods with people of color and/or lower incomes is one factor; however, considerable disparities appear to persist even when stations are placed in these communities.
Efforts to overcome access and use barriers (such as cost, payment options, and familiarity with the system) to bike share for underserved communities have been initiated in a number of cities. The Better Bike Share Partnership (BBSP) has been working with cities around the country to launch and test potentially replicable approaches to improve the equity outcomes. These have included focused outreach efforts and bike share investments in low-income and underserved communities in several cities.
This webinar discusses findings from a survey of people living in lower-income communities of color in Philadelphia, Chicago, and Brooklyn, including many people who are not currently using bike share. These neighborhoods were targeted for outreach related to BBSP programs, and all have bike share stations. The research sought to better understand perceptions and attitudes toward bicycling and bike share, along with the barriers to and opportunities for expanding the use of bike share in traditionally underserved neighborhoods. Findings provide insight into what strategies can be effective in attracting new and diverse users, and what benefits bike share can offer these potential participants.
Webinar: Land Use Mix and Pedestrian Travel Behavior: Advancements in Conceptualization and Measurement
Steven R. Gehrke
Smart growth policies have often emphasized the importance of land use mix as an intervention beholding of lasting urban planning and public health benefits. Past transportation-land use research has identified potential efficiency gains achieved by mixed-use neighborhoods and the subsequent shortening of trip lengths; whereas, public health research has accredited increased land use mixing as an effective policy for facilitating greater physical activity.
However, despite the celebrated transportation, land use, and health benefits of improved land use mixing and the extent of topical attention, no consensus has been reached regarding the conceptualization and measurement of this key smart growth principle or the magnitude of its link to walking. This research, comprising three empirical studies, explores this topic in detail.
This webinar will provide attendees with greater specificity in the measurement of land use mix and its connection to pedestrian travel behavior.
Deteriorating transportation infrastructure is constantly in the news. Government agencies at all levels are pursuing methods to monitor structural health, so that they can prioritize repairs. In Oregon, the Cascadia Subduction Zone megathrust earthquake looms as a significant natural hazard for which our transportation network is ill-prepared. The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) estimates that it will take around $2.6 billion over seven years to repair or replace many of the existing bridges in the state’s network to maintain lifeline routes after a Cascadia event. Funding for the scenarios envisioned by ODOT is not forthcoming, and the project described in this webinar is aimed at creating a tool to support visual inspection of bridges for determining the extent of damage.
The work presented in this webinar has evolved out of NITC-funded research and into a feasibility study of relatively simple but effective field methods for transportation structure dynamic evaluation.
The primary driver for the methods under investigation is the advent of robust mobile apps that can process data from on-board accelerometers in real time. The goal of this work is to identify an easily deployed system to evaluate the dynamic response of a structure (commonly referred to as modal testing). Assuming such a system can be developed and deployed to record baseline data prior to the Cascadia event, the same system could be used after the event, or any significant event for that matter, to assist in determining if a structure has sustained damage that would limit its safe return to service.
This webinar will describe the development and use of various tools for conducting modal testing in the field.
After viewing the webinar, attendees should be able to:
- Describe the scale of the everyday and future hazards facing Oregon bridges
- Explain the relationship of structural parameters to dynamic response
- Describe a framework for conducting dynamic evaluation of structures to determine dominant modal frequencies
- Summarize the results of preliminary field studies using ambient traffic and forced vibration in conjunction with mobile-device based data acquisition
- Use mobile devices and apps to acquire acceleration data
Jenny H. Liu
As many cities are investing in street improvements to provide better biking and walking experiences, the economic value and impacts of these active transportation facilities remain areas where many practitioners, planners and policy makers are seeking more conclusive evidence. With various modes competing for scarce resources, planners and transportation agencies often struggle with how to justify infrastructure investments for non-motorized modes, particularly when driving is still the predominant mode of transportation in most cities.
In this project we assess property value impacts of Portland’s “Green Loop” signature bike infrastructure concept, illustrating the importance of considering both accessibility and extensiveness of bike facility networks. The Green Loop is a proposed 6-mile linear open space running through the heart of Portland, connecting existing and new open spaces, parks, gathering areas, and walking and biking pathways. As envisioned, the Green Loop concept requires significant infrastructure investments, and would result in both short-term and long-term impacts on transportation (for all travel modes), economic development and the environment.
In collaboration with the Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS), the Portland State University Institute for Sustainable Solutions (ISS), and in partnership with PeopleForBikes and the Summit Foundation, the goal of this research is to characterize, quantify and analyze these costs, benefits and impacts, particularly focusing on case studies of similar infrastructure investments in active transportation.
In this webinar, we will further focus on the residential property value impacts associated with advanced bike facilities. We find that proximity to advanced bike facilities has significant and positive effects on all property values, highlighting household preferences for high quality bike infrastructure. The lessons and research gaps identified in this work led to the development of two ongoing NITC-funded studies: "Understanding Economic and Business Impacts of Street Improvements for Bicycle and Pedestrian Mobility - A Multi-City Multi-Approach Exploration" and "Understanding the economic impacts of urban greenway infrastructure." We will share some updates on these ongoing projects as well.
Key learning outcomes include:
- A framework for understanding the economic results of bicycle and pedestrian investments, with data to show:
- Evidence of impacts on residential property values
- Evidence of impacts on on business and retail activity
- Insight into potential short-term and long-term impacts of the Portland Green Loop
- A method for estimating economic impacts of similar proposed active transportation projects
- A framework for understanding the economic results of bicycle and pedestrian investments, with data to show: