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Project

#341 Safe by Design: Collecting Traveler Centric Data to Inform Safe Street Design


Principal Investigator
Megan Ryerson
Status
Active
Start Date
Jan. 1, 2020
End Date
June 30, 2023
Research Type
Applied
Grant Type
Research
Grant Program
FAST Act - Mobility National (2016 - 2022)
Grant Cycle
Mobility21 - University of Pennsylvania
Visibility
Public

Abstract

Studying Visual Experience to Inform Infrastructure Design
Streets are designed for vehicle efficiency. Engineers reference vehicle-based codes, use detailed models to optimize vehicle flow, and conduct evaluations with driving simulators before implementing design. A constraint, rather than
a design variable, is pedestrian and cyclist safety, as roadway designers currently lack the ability to quantify and test safety prior to construction. Collecting this missing data is at best challenging and expensive, and at worst, unsafe.
Professor Megan Ryerson fills this gap by using eye tracking technology to collect and study the user-based data and perspective towards transforming how roadway designers understand, measure, and implement safety interventions.    
Description
CYCLIST EXPERIENCE AND THE VALUE OF DESIGN
Purpose: This study serves to complement the Safe Mobility studies conducted on Philadelphia Streets with the capacity to test the impact of design features, such as road striping, paint, and signage. Paired testings allow the research team to identify the impact or value of specific interventions, controlling for other variables.
Design: Variables will include (1) design features such as pavement paint, including specifications such as the color, texture, and style of striping, and (2) physical elements such as bollards and signage.

INTERACTION OF SCOOTERS WITH OTHER MODES
Purpose: Scooter share programs are gaining traction as a new component of the modern, urban transportation system. Their interaction with existing modes has yet to be fully studied; towards this end, Bird, a leader in dockless scooter share, is interested in capturing the experience of using scooters and sharing facilities with other modes.
Design: Bird will provide scooters to the Center for Safe Mobility for use on a closed circuit. Participants will recreate a typical street experience (e.g. a cyclist, pedestrian, and scooter user may each be equipped with eye tracking glasses to understand the negotiation between modes).    
Timeline
Fall: Collect data from cyclists in and around Philadelphia, code raw data
Fall: Publish perspective piece in Issues in Transportation 
Winter: Code! Develop safety variables, test correlations, etc. 
Spring: Collect more data to expand analysis
Summer: Publish Results     
Deployment Plan
Work hand in hand with SEPTA and PennDOT to ensure that the new methods of safety analysis are integrated into planning documents. 

Work with AASHTO and NACTO on this as well (through SEPTA deployment partner relationships). 
    
Expected Accomplishments and Metrics
My work will develop brand new methods to estimate safety and visibility.      

Individuals Involved

Email Name Affiliation Role Position
mryerson@upenn.edu Ryerson, Megan University of Pennsylvania PI Faculty - Tenured

Budget

Amount of UTC Funds Awarded
$81000.00
Total Project Budget (from all funding sources)
$200000.00

Documents

Type Name Uploaded
Publication New Rules for Old Roads April 14, 2021, 8:44 a.m.
Progress Report 341_Progress_Report_2021-03-31 April 14, 2021, 8:44 a.m.

Match Sources

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Partners

Name Type
SEPTA Deployment Partner Deployment Partner
PennDOT Deployment Partner Deployment Partner