Friday, October 31, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Where: Room 204 of the Distance Learning Center Wing of the Urban Center at PSU
When: noon to 1 p.m.
Speaker: Joseph Broach, Ph.D. Candidate, Portland State University
Topic: Trick or Treatment? Impact of Route-Level Features on Decisions to Walk or Bike
Summary: Some travel routes attract people walking and cycling, while others may scare them away. What features of street environments are most important, and how do available routes affect decisions to bike or walk on a specific trip? 

Research to date has focused on either large-scale areal measures like "miles of bike lane nearby" or else has considered only shortest path routes. Neither method is suited to capturing the impact of targeted route-level policies like neighborhood greenways. This session will present a new technique for measuring bike and walk accessibility along the most likely route for a given trip. The method is applied to travel data, and results provide new insight into the relationship between route quality and travel mode choice.

Friday, November 7, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Where: Room 204 of the Distance Learning Center Wing of the Urban Center at PSU
When: noon to 1 p.m.
Speaker: Brian Saelens, Professor of Pediatrics and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Seattle’s Children’s Hospital & University of Washington
Topic: Links Between Public Transportation and Physical Activity (Effects of LRT on Physical Activity Based on Seattle GPS Study)

Summary: This seminar will explore the empirical evidence regarding the links between the use of public transportation and physical activity, with a specific focus on using integrated device and self-report methods to identify travel modes and physical activity.

Bio: Brian E. Saelens, Ph.D. is a Professor of Pediatrics and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at the University of Washington and Principal Investigator at Seattle Children’s Research Institute. Dr. Saelens is a clinical/health psychologist. His interest areas include obesity treatment and prevention, especially in environmental factors and policies that influence physical activity and eating behaviors in children and adults. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed original investigation and review articles.

Stream the seminar live, or watch an archived video, when available.

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Friday, November 14, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Where: Room 204 of the Distance Learning Center Wing of the Urban Center at PSU
When: noon to 1 p.m.
Speaker: Jordan Palmeri, Science and Policy Analyst, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality Green Building Program
Topic: Accessory dwelling units in Portland, Oregon: Evaluation and Interpretation of a Survey of ADU Owners

Summary: Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) are booming in Portland, Oregon. ADUs are small separate living units on single family lots that are often called granny flats or mother-in-law units. Over the last few years, fee waivers from the City of Portland have increased ADU development from 30 units per year to over 200 units. These discreet forms of density can offer a variety of environmental, social, and economic benefits to ADU owners and their communities. Many of these benefits, however, have always been speculated rather than substantiated by data.

In an effort to better understand the real impact or benefit of this housing form, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and partners conducted a survey of ADU owners in Portland, Eugene, and Ashland, Oregon. This was the largest survey of ADUs owners ever conducted in the United States and the results have significant utility in policy for Oregon cities and beyond.

This presentation will present the results of survey and highlight topics such as ADU affordability, environmental impact, occupant demographics, owner demographics, community economic impact...

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Friday, November 21, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Where: Room 204 of the Distance Learning Center Wing of the Urban Center at PSU
When: noon to 1 p.m.
Speaker: Nick Foster, Senior Planner, Kittelson and Associates
Topic: Evaluating the level-of-service of protected bike lanes 

Summary: The most recent edition of the Highway Capacity Manual (HCM) contains analysis procedures for measuring the level-of-service (LOS), also referred to as quality of service, provided by an urban roadway to bicyclists. The method uses different design and operating features of the roadway segment (e.g. width, motor vehicle volumes and speeds) to assess an LOS grade of A (best) to F (worst). These procedures are used by planners and engineers to recommend how existing streets could be retrofitted or new streets designed to better serve people on bicycles (and other modes). However, the current HCM does not include methods that address protected bike lanes (aka “cycle tracks” or “separated bike lanes”), only conventional striped bike lanes, shoulders, and shared streets. There are other methods for predicting comfort from a bicyclist’s perspective that do consider protected bike lanes, but they are either based only on expert opinion or on surveys in Denmark.

This presentation will describe how to evaluate the level-of-service of a protected bike lane using results from surveys conducted in the United States. The model developed by this project could be used to supplement the current HCM to...

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Friday, December 5, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Summary: The Federal Transit Administration's (FTA) discretionary New Starts program is the federal government's largest discretionary funding program. From heavy to light rail, from commuter rail to bus rapid transit systems, the FTA's New Starts program has helped to make possible hundreds of new or extended transit fixed guideway systems across the country, including most of TriMet’s light rail extensions and WES commuter rail. Beginning in 2001, FTA has required project sponsors to prepare a Before and After Study report on the effectiveness of planning and implementation of New Starts and Small Starts projects. The studies focus on five transit characteristics – project scope, capital costs, operating and maintenance costs, service levels, and ridership behavior – and compares these characteristics at various planning milestones, as well as before and after implementation of the project.

TriMet, in conjunction with FTA, has completed or nearly completed Before and After Study reports for three projects – Interstate MAX, WES Commuter Rail, and the Green Line – and is in the process of working on two more. This presentation will briefly describe the federal New Starts program, FTA requirements for Before and After Studies, summarize findings from the three TriMet studies and provide comparisons with other completed New Starts projects across the U.S.

Bio: Joe Recker has worked within TriMet’s Capital Projects Division for over seven years, originally as...

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