accessibility

County wants to make informal paths safer, more formal

By Robbie Webber Montgomery County, MD, is asking residents to mark the informal paths that they have been using to reach destinations. Many paths are worn through woods, cul-de-sac ends, and beaten into the grass where good pedestrian connections don’t exist. The county is updating its

Major roads undercut safety benefits of highly accessible places

By Chris McCahill In working with transportation agencies across the U.S., our team often faces questions about the role of safety in accessibility analysis. While we know the safety and comfort of streets clearly impacts access for people on foot or bicycle, the effects of accessibility on

Canadian non-driving seniors less likely to engage in activities outside the home

By Robbie Webber A study of out-of-home participation in social and civic activities among Canadian senior drivers and non-drivers sheds light on the problems faced by both individuals and communities to keep older adults engaged and healthy. Of particular concern was the finding that non-driving

Destination access bills introduced in U.S. House

By Eric Sundquist A trio of representatives along with 10 co-sponsors have introduced a pair of bills that would set destination access as a national performance measure. Both bills describe destination access, aka “accessibility,” in terms of travel times by auto, transit, walking, and

Short commutes and multimodal access motivate housing choices

By Chris McCahill In choosing where to live, people strive for a combination of short driving commutes and good transit access, according to a new study spanning three large regions: Atlanta, Seattle, and Detroit. Walkable neighborhoods are also a plus, depending on the region. For this study,

Growth near transit is key to connecting smaller cities, SSTI finds

By Chris McCahill A new study by SSTI and the Traffic Operations and Safety Lab at UW-Madison provides a partial roadmap to the future for transit in smaller cities. The study gave Eau Claire, Wisconsin—a city nearing 70,000 people—a look into emerging transit technologies and insight on

Use of multimodal accessibility metrics in project prioritization and investment

By Saumya Jain The Accessibility Observatory at the University of Minnesota recently released a one-of-a-kind report that ranks the country’s 50 largest metropolitan areas (by population) according to accessibility to jobs via bicycle. The report is a product of a multi-year study, where the

Want to increase transit ridership without adding service? Make it easy to get to the stations

By Eric Sundquist As in the United States, many rail transit lines in Sydney, Australia, have imperfect connections to the local street and pedestrian networks. In Sydney, 44 of 178 rail transit stations have entrances on only one side, necessitating long walks for unlucky travelers seeking to

Researcher launches open source accessibility toolbox

By Michael Brenneis and Chris McCahill DOTs and planning agencies interested in measuring access to destinations have a growing number of packages and data sources to choose from. Folks not looking to reinvent the wheel are turning to shiny products like Citilabs’ Sugar Access, Conveyal, and

Quantifying the quality and connectivity of sidewalks: walking accessibility indices

By Saumya Jain The May 2019 issue of the Institute of Traffic Engineers journal was focused on healthy and sustainable transportation solutions. With the constant rise in obesity numbers and health concerns, planners and designers around the world are trying to bring back physical activity in