Interested in active transportation research? What’s been done? What should be done? 

We’re excited to share the release of the Research Roadmap for the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Council on Active Transportation (CAT). The Roadmap was created to foster research that will address important active transportation needs at the state DOT level and beyond. 

Funded by the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), a team of researchers from the Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC) at Portland State University (PSU) and Toole Design prepared the Research Roadmap over the past 18 months. They reviewed existing and on-going active transportation research, identified key research needs from a wide range of sources, and held outreach activities with practitioners to refine and prioritize those needs.

The project offers guidance on where active transportation research has been, and where it should go next in developing speed management strategies to improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety on arterial roadways, determining context-driven optimal spacing between marked crosswalks, addressing racial and economic disparities in safety improvements, refining guidance on bicycle signal timing, overcoming barriers to implementing active transportation in planning and engineering practice, and many more research questions:

  • The...
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Sponsor: National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP)
Research Team Lead: Christina Fink, Toole Design Group
Portland State Investigators: Christopher Monsere, Nathan McNeil and Sirisha Kothuri

One of the most common locations for motor vehicle-bicyclist crashes is at controlled intersections. Particularly dangerous is the conflict between through bicyclists and turning drivers (either left or right). Despite widespread acknowledgement of this problem, transportation engineers and planners still lack definitive guidance on how to safely and effectively design for bicyclists at intersections in the United States.

In a newly contracted project, awarded to Toole Design Group by the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), a team of researchers will identify design best practices to reduce conflicts at intersections. In addition to Toole, the team includes researchers from Portland State University, Oregon State University (David Hurwitz), and Safe Streets Research & Consulting (Rebecca Sanders). Christopher...

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A woman crosses the street at acrosswalk, with traffic calming speed bumps for cars leading up to the crosswalk
Photo by Cait McCusker
Jennifer Dill (PI), Chris Monsere, and Nathan McNeil; Portland State University
  • Shape the Active Transportation Roadmap: The project team will begin gathering input from transportation professionals in the coming months. Add your email address if you would like to be contacted.

Amid the explosion of active transportation literature over the last thirty years, practitioners struggle to effectively synthesize and use that research in their everyday practice. The interdisciplinary scope is vast: engineering, health and medicine, planning and design, psychology, public administration and policy, and many more. The search tools to find the sprawl of active transportation research on any one topic are inadequate, particularly for the average user. Meanwhile, there are still gaps in our knowledge about active...

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Bike signals at an intersection
Photo by Christopher Monsere
 
Christopher Monsere and Sirisha Kothuri; Portland State University
David Hurwitz and Douglas Cobb; Oregon State University
Christina Fink, Bill Schultheiss, Thomas Hillman, Gwen Shaw and Jesse Boudart; Toole Design Group, Inc.

The latest report from the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), “Road User Understanding of Bicycle Signal Faces on Traffic Signals” (20-07/Task 420), zeroes in on some key gaps in research and practice around road...

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Green bike signal
Principal Investigator: Chris Monsere, Portland State University
 Learn more about this newly funded research by viewing the Project Overview page. We anticipate findings to be published in 2020.

THE NEW PROJECT

Portland State University is embarking on a collaborative research effort, funded by the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), to help road users better understand bike-specific traffic signals. Over the next year, Dr. Christopher Monsere and Dr. Sirisha Kothuri of PSU's Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC) will work with researchers from Oregon State University and Toole Design Group to identify gaps in driver comprehension and causes of confusion when both bike signals and motor vehicle signals are present...

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