Tight corners save lives

Since early in the highway era, road designers have tended to favor wide, rounded corners, and dedicated slip lanes that let drivers turn through an intersection without having to slow down quite as much. As many engineers and transportation advocates know, however, those wide turning radii can create issues for people trying to cross on foot. They create longer crossing distances, exposing people to traffic longer, and they increase the chance of a pedestrian crash by 50 percent or more, according to one new study.

State DOTs working to improve public engagement around urban highways

Many highways that once cut through cities across the country are now coming of age, and the state DOTs responsible for maintaining them are beginning to wrestle with what those facilities should look like in the coming decades and, in some cases, whether they should be there at all. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has signaled strong interest in rethinking these highways and USDOT will soon be inviting applications for its $1B Reconnecting Communities program, authorized through IIJA. That will be good news for a small number of agencies facing mounting pressure from community members pushing for innovative thinking on urban freeways.

Utah leverages value capture to fund transportation

A unique public funding structure called Transportation Reinvestment Zones is a new strategy to increase funds available for public transportation and expanded housing near transit. TRZs work on the principle that improved amenities, access, and convenience will lead to increased property taxes, generating funds for transit and other public services.

Seattle developed an alternative process for locating pedestrian crossings

The Seattle DOT, in seeking to improve pedestrian mobility, is installing marked crosswalks in areas with anticipated demand, which is an important shift away from the conventional warrant-based system. The final form that these installations take—paint alone, or paint with enhancements such as medians or flashing beacons—will depend on the location, and ultimately still be a matter of engineering judgment and available funding.

Utah and Washington DOTs measure connectivity across highways under recent federal pilot program

The state DOTs in Washington (WSDOT) and Utah (UDOT) recently developed methods to evaluate the comfort, safety, and connectivity of active transportation networks, focusing on bicycle and pedestrian connectivity across highways. Guidance and support for both projects came from the Federal Highway Administration’s 2018 Measuring Multimodal Network Connectivity Pilot. The studies leverage newer data sources and GIS techniques to think about how highways can create barriers for nearby communities and how major corridors can be made more permeable.

Micromobility in Cities, A History and Policy Overview (National League of Cities, 2019)

Bike sharing—both docked and undocked, manual and electric-assist—plus kick and electric scooters have become commonplace in cities across the U.S. But best practices are still emerging, and cities are often not sure if these new micromobility devices will bring positive or negative consequences to their transportation system and neighborhoods. The National League of Cities has provided a history of the rise of micromobility, a guide for what cities should think about as they move forward with regulation and policy, and finally case studies from across the country.

How and Where Should I Ride This Thing? “Rules Of The Road” for Personal Transportation Devices (Mineta Transportation Institute, 2019)

The Mineta Transportation Institute surveyed various levels of government—cities, states, and college campuses— as well as conducted personal interviews with stakeholders, to detail how jurisdictions are regulating electric and kick scooters, skateboards, e-skateboards, hoverboards, Segways, and rollerblades. They then recommended model state laws to bring some standardization to the use of these personal transportation devices.

Real-time crash prediction models: State-of-the-art, design pathways and ubiquitous requirements (Accident Analysis and Prevention, 2019)

With the advancements in artificial intelligence, and multiple studies being focused towards developing real-time crash prediction models, the concept of a proactive safety management system has become very close to reality. The linked study conducts an extensive review of the existing real-time crash prediction models, systematically illustrating the various methodologies being used world-wide. It evaluates the universality, design requirements, and associated challenges of various models. The study aims to be a “one stop knowledge source” for future researchers and practitioners for transitioning from the existing real-time crash prediction conceptual models to a real-world operational proactive traffic safety management system.

Real-time crash prediction models: State-of-the-art, design pathways and ubiquitous requirements (Accident Analysis and Prevention, 2019)

With the advancements in artificial intelligence, and multiple studies being focused towards developing real-time crash prediction models, the concept of a proactive safety management system has become very close to reality. The linked study conducts an extensive review of the existing real-time crash prediction models, systematically illustrating the various methodologies being used world-wide. It evaluates the universality, design requirements, and associated challenges of various models. The study aims to be a “one stop knowledge source” for future researchers and practitioners for transitioning from the existing real-time crash prediction conceptual models to a real-world operational proactive traffic safety management system.

Real-time crash prediction models: State-of-the-art, design pathways and ubiquitous requirements (Accident Analysis and Prevention, 2019)

With the advancements in artificial intelligence, and multiple studies being focused towards developing real-time crash prediction models, the concept of a proactive safety management system has become very close to reality. The linked study conducts an extensive review of the existing real-time crash prediction models, systematically illustrating the various methodologies being used world-wide. It evaluates the universality, design requirements, and associated challenges of various models. The study aims to be a “one stop knowledge source” for future researchers and practitioners for transitioning from the existing real-time crash prediction conceptual models to a real-world operational proactive traffic safety management system.