Interest, comfort, and safety: A geospatial exploration of the perceptual dimensions of walkability

Authors: Dudley Bonsal*, James Madison University
Topics: Environmental Perception, Geographic Information Science and Systems, Transportation Geography
Keywords: environmental perception, walkability, geospatial analysis, land use
Session Type: Poster
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Lincoln 2, Marriott, Exhibition Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

The City of Harrisonburg in Virginia is working to create a transportation system that includes an interconnected pedestrian and bicycle network throughout the city. In order to determine the highest priorities for pedestrian projects, the city adopted the ActiveTrans Priority Tool, which incorporates physical and legal constraints, existing road conditions, connectivity to the overall network, and equity for those with the highest need for non-automotive means of transportation. This study analyzes how effectively geospatial data can contribute to identification of places in the transportation network that reflect the perceptual dimensions of a pedestrian’s surroundings, including how interesting the surroundings are and how comfortable and safe a pedestrian will feel. While retaining some variables used in the ActiveTrans analysis, including issues such as speed limit and underserved populations, the analysis also incorporates factors that influence environmental perception, including presence of trees, building setbacks, building density, and land use mix.

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