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Summaries: 
Identification and Characterization of PM2.5 and VOC Hot Spots on Arterial Corridor by Integrating Probe Vehicle, Traffic, and Land Use Data: The purpose of this study is to explore the use of integrated probe vehicle, traffic and land use data to identify and characterize fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and volatile organic compound (VOC) hot spot locations on urban arterial corridors. An emission hot spot is defined as a fixed location along a corridor in which the mean pollutant concentrations are consistently above the 85th percentile of pollutant concentrations when considering all other locations along the corridor during the same time period. In order to collect data for this study, an electric vehicle was equipped with instruments designed to measure PM2.5 and VOC concentrations. Second-by-second measurements were performed for each pollutant from both the right and left sides of the vehicle. Detailed meteorological, traffic and land use data is also...

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GPS use in travel behavior studies has seen increasing acceptance over the past decade, with more than 15 travel surveys conducted since 2000 including a GPS subcomponent. Similarly, accelerometers have become the gold standard for collecting objective physical activity data in health studies. Since 2003, GeoStats has been involved in studies that have deployed both devices in tandem to collect second-by-second travel and physical activity data never before available. This seminar will cover the use of these technologies to address key research questions facing transportation and health professionals.

Dr. Jean Wolf is the president and co-founder of GeoStats, a company specializing in the application of GPS and GIS technologies for the collection, analysis, visualization, and reporting of transportation data. Since the launch of GeoStats in 2000, Dr. Wolf has led all GPS-enhanced travel surveys and physical activity studies conducted by the firm (with more than 20 studies to date). Dr. Wolf has extensive project management, technology, and logistics experience, including 10 years at UPS as an industrial and systems engineer, which makes her uniquely qualified to run complex GPS studies that depend upon the integration of...

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Summary: Urban bicyclists’ uptake of traffic-related air pollution is still not well quantified, due to a lack of direct measurements of uptake and a lack of analysis of the variation in uptake. This paper describes and establishes the feasibility of a novel method for measuring bicyclists’ uptake of volatile organic compounds (VOC) by sampling breath concentrations. Early results from the data set demonstrate the ability of the proposed method to generate findings for transportation analysis, with statistically significant exposure and uptake differences from bicycling on arterial versus bikeway facilities for several traffic-related VOC. These results provide the first empirical evidence that the usage of bikeways (or greenways) by bicyclists within an urban environment can significantly reduce uptake of dangerous traffic-related gas pollutants. Dynamic concentration and respiration data reveal unfavorable correlations from a health impacts perspective, where bicyclists’ respiration and travel time are greater at higher-concentration locations on already high-concentration roadways (arterials).

Bio: Alex Bigazzi is a Ph.D. candidate in Transportation Engineering at PSU, where he is also teaching a class on transportation emissions modeling....

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The role of walking in the development of healthy, livable communities is being increasingly recognized. In urban areas, intersections are often viewed as a deterrent to walking, as their operation primarily favors automobiles, leading to large and unnecessary delays for pedestrians. There is currently very limited research on accommodating and/or prioritizing pedestrians at signalized intersections in the North American context. Pedestrians are often considered as a deterrent to efficient vehicular traffic flow and therefore active efforts to include them in operational decisions at intersections have been lagging. This research aims to fill that gap by understanding factors that influence pedestrian crossing behavior at signalized intersections and developing cost effective and easily deployable signal timing strategies that could be employed at intersections, to increase efficiency for pedestrians.

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Topic: Skateboarding as Transportation: Findings from Exploratory Research

Bio: Tessa Walker is currently completing her thesis on non-motorized transportation and qualitative research methods with supervision from Dr. Jennifer Dill and Dr. David Morgan. For more information on her thesis research please visit the Skate Study PDX website (http://www.skatestudypdx.wordpress.com). Tessa has previously worked in town planning in Vermont, sustainability auditing in Massachusetts, and in bicycle and pedestrian transportation research with the Family Activity Study at PSU. She is currently an intern at the public opinion research firm DHM Research, and she will be a 2013-2014 Hatfield Fellow.

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Summary: The declining rates of physical activity among children, particularly adolescent girls, are well-documented, yet there has been insufficient research into the attitudes about health behaviors, particularly active travel, of the children themselves. Tara's research explores attitudes about active transportation among children aged 4-17 years and examines how perceived ability, self-efficacy, and sensitivity to certain environments or facilities vary across gender and age of the children. She utilises data from the Family Activity Study, a multi-year longitudinal intervention study in Portland, Oregon, in which 490 children answered surveys regarding their attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors about traveling by walking, bicycling, or being in a car.

The video begins at 2:16.

Abstract: Reliance on the automobile for most trips contributes to costly trends like pollution, oil dependence, congestion, and obesity. Germany and the U.S. have among the highest motorization rates in the world. Yet Germans make a four times higher share of trips by foot, bike, and public transport and drive for a 25 percent lower share of trips.

This presentation first investigates international trends in daily travel behavior with a focus on Germany and the USA. Next, the presentation examines the transport and land-use policies in Germany over the last 40 years that have encouraged more walking, bicycling, and public transport use. Using a case study of policy changes in the German city of Freiburg, the presentation concludes with policies that are transferable to car-oriented countries around the world.

Bio: Ralph Buehler is Assistant Professor of Urban Affairs & Planning and a Faculty Fellow with the Metropolitan Institute at Virginia Tech in Alexandria, VA. Originally from Germany, most of his research has an international comparative perspective, contrasting transport and land-use policies, transport systems, and travel behavior in Western Europe and North America. His research falls into three areas: (1) the influence of transport policy, land use, socio- demographics on travel behavior; (2) bicycling, walking, and public health; and (3) public transport...

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