Updates to the Highway Capacity Manual and New NCHRP Guide to Pedestrian Analysis
Despite widespread use of walking as a transportation mode, walking has received far less attention than the motor vehicle in terms of national guidance and methods to support planning, designing, and operating safe, functional, and comfortable facilities. To address this gap, the TRB National Cooperative Highway Research Program funded NCHRP Project 17-87: Enhancing Pedestrian Volume Estimation and Developing HCM Pedestrian Methodologies for Safe and Sustainable Communities. Led by Principal Investigator Paul Ryus, Kittelson & Associates partnered with Portland State University and the Highway Safety Research Center at the University of North Carolina to lead research to update pedestrian analysis methodologies in the Highway Capacity Manual (HCM).
The research team created the following new products, published in 2022 and free to download from the National Academies Press:
- NCHRP Research Report 992: Guide to Pedestrian Analysis: Documents the state-of-the-practice for pedestrian volume counting, pedestrian safety analysis, and pedestrian operations analysis. A major portion of the research evaluated the effects of safety countermeasures at street crossings on pedestrian quality of service (QOS). You can also learn more about this repot by watching this short video introduction on this state-of-the-art guide.
- NCHRP Web-Only Document 312: Enhancing Pedestrian Volume Estimation and Developing HCM Pedestrian Methodologies for Safe and Sustainable Communities: New and updated HCM-compatible methodologies to evaluate the quality of networks of pedestrian facilities, and synthesized best practices for estimating pedestrian volumes and exposure:
- A new method for evaluating pedestrian satisfaction and associated LOS at uncontrolled pedestrian crossings.
- An updated method for estimating pedestrian delay at uncontrolled pedestrian crossings, including up-to-date information on motorist yielding rates for a wide variety of safety countermeasures.
- An updated method for estimating pedestrian delay at signalized crossings covering a wider range of situations, including two-stage crossings, two-leg crossings, exclusive pedestrian phases, and crosswalk closures.
- An update to the “roadway crossing difficulty” component of the HCM’s urban street pedestrian LOS method
- Two spreadsheet-based computational engines for implementing the new and updated analysis methods developed by the project
- Five presentations from a peer exchange workshop:
- An Implementation Plan for putting this research into practice.
- Draft text to update NCHRP Report 825: Planning and Preliminary Engineering Applications Guide to the HCM to match the proposed HCM changes and incorporate a recommended approach to evaluating pedestrian network QOS
The research team included:
- Kittleson and Associates: Paul Ryus, Anusha Musunuru, and James Bonneson
- Portland State University: Sirisha Kothuri, Christopher Monsere, and Nathan McNeil
- Highway Safety Research Center at the University of North Carolina: Seth LaJeunesse, Krista Nordback, Wesley Kumfer, and Sophie Currin
The Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC) at Portland State University is home to the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC), the Initiative for Bicycle and Pedestrian Innovation (IBPI), and other transportation programs. TREC produces research and tools for transportation decision makers, develops K-12 curriculum to expand the diversity and capacity of the workforce, and engages students and professionals through education.
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