Updates to the Road Capability Manual and does not

Despite the widespread use of walking as a mode of transport, walking has received much less attention than motor vehicle in terms of national guidance and methods to support the planning, design and operation of facilities safe, functional and comfortable. To fill this gap, the TRB National Cooperative Highway Research Program funded NCHRP Project 17-87: Improving Pedestrian Volume Estimation and Developing Pedestrian HCM Methodologies for Safe and Sustainable Communities. Led by Principal Investigator Paul Ryus, Kittelson & Associates partnered with Portland State University and the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center to conduct research aimed at updating methodologies for analyzing pedestrians in the Highway Capacity Manual (HCM).

The research team created the following new products, published in 2022 and freely downloadable from the National Academies Press:

  • NCHRP Research Report 992: Pedestrian Analysis Guide: Documents the state of practice for pedestrian volume counting, pedestrian safety analysis, and pedestrian operations analysis. Much of the research has evaluated the effects of level crossing safety countermeasures on pedestrian quality of service (QOS). You can also learn more about this report by watching this short video introduction to this state-of-the-art guide.
  • NCHRP Paper 312 online only: Improving Pedestrian Volume Estimation and Developing Pedestrian HCM Methodologies for Safe and Sustainable Communities: New and updated HCM-compatible methodologies for assessing the quality of pedestrian facility networks, and synthesis of best practices for estimating pedestrian volumes and exposure:
    • A new method for evaluating pedestrian satisfaction and LOS associated with uncontrolled pedestrian crossings.
    • An updated method for estimating pedestrian delay at uncontrolled crosswalks, including updated information on motorist yield rates for a wide variety of security countermeasures.
    • An updated method for estimating pedestrian delay at signalized crossings covering a wider range of situations, including two-stage crossings, two-leg crossings, pedestrian-only phases and crossing closures for pedestrians.
    • An update of the “road crossing difficulty” component of the HCM’s Urban Street Pedestrian LOS Method
  • Two spreadsheet-based calculation engines for the implementation of new and updated analytical methods developed by the project
  • Five presentations from a peer exchange workshop:
  • An implementation plan to put this research into practice.
  • Draft text to update NCHRP Report 825: Planning and Preliminary Engineering Applications Guide to the HCM to match the proposed changes to the HCM and incorporate a recommended approach to assess the quality of service of the pedestrian network

The research team included:

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 increase workforce diversity and capacity, and engages students and professionals through education.


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About Irene J. O'Donnell

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