New National Accessibility Evaluation pooled-fund study solicitation is live
This new pooled-fund project, led by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, will implement a measurement of accessibility to jobs across the entire United States. For every Census block, it will calculate the number of jobs that can be reached, by driving or by transit, within various travel time thresholds. Each pooled-fund partner will have direct digital access to these detailed accessibility datasets. In addition, an annual report will summarize the accessibility dataset for metropolitan areas across the country.
Accessibility combines the simpler concept of mobility with an understanding that travel is driven by a desire to reach destinations. Accessibility metrics combine network travel times with the locations and value of the many origins and destinations served by a multimodal transportation system. Accessibility evaluation has applications in a variety of areas, including performance management, scenario evaluation and analysis, transportation and land use research, and transportation equity.
To join the study, view the Transportation Pooled Fund Program solicitation. For more information, visit the pooled-fund study web page.
Eric Sundquist at SSTI writes: “Accessibility moves out of the lab and into practice”
Accessibility, long considered a more robust measure of transportation system success than simple mobility, is moving out of research and into practice, according to panelists on an SSTI webinar.
Accessibility measures the ease by which travelers can reach desired destinations, or “opportunities.” Often, but not always, it is measured in terms of time. As such, it combines both mobility and proximity of land uses, bringing together two directly connected public policy concerns that are often poorly integrated in decision-making.
While accessibility is not a new concept, data limitations have made it difficult to measure. Now it is becoming practice-ready, panelists said.
The webinar, broadcast Dec. 4, featured Andrew Owen of the University of Minnesota’s Accessibility Observatory, Richard Kuzmyak of Renaissance Planning Group, and Kate Sylvester of the Maryland DOT. Slides and a recording are available on the SSTI website.
Owen, who cited commentary in the conservative National Review and libertarian Reason Foundation about the benefit of accessibility measures, has been working with Minnesota DOT and now is developing a pooled fund study to mainstream accessibility measures across the country. Kuzmyak has applied accessibility measures in the Washington, D.C., area, including in a project with Sylvester’s Maryland DOT.
While both efforts aim to make use of accessibility for better transportation and land use decision-making, the approaches are somewhat different.
Owen’s group uses a cumulative opportunities count, generally using jobs as the critical opportunities. They estimate the number of opportunities that can be accessed by car and transit from neighborhoods around the nation within a set time, say 30 minutes. …
Download transit job accessibility data and shapefiles for 46 metro areas: http://access.umn.edu/research/america/transit2014/data/
Have fun, and let us know what you do with it.
Andrew Owen of the University of Minnesota Accessibility Observatory will be talking about accessibility October 28 at FHWA’s:
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 1:30:00 PM CDT – 3:00:00 PM CDTThe Federal Highway Administration, in cooperation with several national stakeholder groups, would like you to join us for the next Let’s Talk Performance: Performance Measures Beyond the Mainstream. The webinar is scheduled for Tuesday, October 28, from 2:30PM to 4:00 PM (EDT). This event is open to FHWA staff, State DOTs, MPOs, transit providers, and other stakeholder agencies. This webinar is the second in a series of six webinars focused on transportation performance management implementation activities. During this webinar, presenters will: • Provide an update on FHWA Rulemaking proceedings; • Focus on States and MPOs evaluating non-traditional performance measures
As keen readers of this blog or my twitter feed know, the Accessibility Observatory released Access Across America: Transit 2014 this week, with an official University of Minnesota Press Release and Maps. This post links to third party coverage and interpretation of the report.
Minneapolis – St. Paul
Our Access Across America: Transit 2014 report is now out.
Accessibility is the ease of reaching valued destinations. It can be measured for various transportation modes, to different types of destinations, and at different times of day. There are a variety of ways to define accessibility, but the number of destinations reachable within a given travel time is the most comprehensible and transparent, as well as the most directly comparable across cities.
This report examines accessibility to jobs by transit in 46 of the 50 largest (by population) metropolitan areas in the United States. Transit is used for an estimated 5 percent of commuting trips in the United States, making it the second most widely used commute mode after driving. This report complements Access Across America: Auto 2013, a report of job accessibility by auto in 51 metropolitan areas. …
Rankings are determined by a weighted average of accessibility, giving a higher weight to closer jobs. Jobs reachable within ten minutes are weighted most heavily, and jobs are given decreasing weight as travel time increases up to 60 minutes.
This report describes the data and methodology used in the separate publication, Access Across America: Transit 2014. That report examines accessibility to jobs by transit in 46 of the 50 largest (by population) metropolitan areas in the United States. Transit is used for an estimated 5 percent of commuting trips in the United States, making it the second most widely used commute mode after driving. Rankings are determined by a weighted average of accessibility, giving a higher weight to closer jobs. Jobs reachable within ten minutes are weighted most heavily, and jobs are given decreasing weight as travel time increases up to 60 minutes.
The research was sponsored by the Center for Transportation Studies at the University of Minnesota. Accessibility Observatory reports, including the analysis of job accessibility by auto published last year Access Across America: Auto 2013, and interactive maps are available for download at: access.umn.edu/research/america.
Visit the site to see the reports, rankings, data, and maps.