News Tagged: Livability

18 Entries Tagged

OTREC gives “green light” to new hybrid electric vehicle

Posted on April 11, 2014

OTREC researchers and students from the Oregon Institute of Technology have teamed up with Green Lite Motors to test a next-generation hybrid car.
 
Green Lite Motors, a clean-tech start-up company based in Portland, Ore., has developed a small, three-wheeled, gas-electric hybrid vehicle based on the platform of a Suzuki Burgman scooter.
 
The vehicle is classed as a motorcycle, and has all the advantages of the smaller vehicle — it doesn’t take up a whole parking space, and it gives off fewer emissions — but it also has an advanced roll-cage design, giving it the safety and comfort of a standard passenger car. It has two wheels in the front, one in the back, and mileage possibilities greater than 100 miles per gallon.
The target market areas for this two-passenger vehicle are urban commute zones, where large numbers of people travel daily from suburban homes to city-based professions. 
 
The tiny hybrid car could change the commuting experience, minimizing gas expenditure and cutting down the time people spend looking for parking.

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Tags: electric vehicles, emissions, livability, oregon institute of technology, otrec

Why did the pedestrian cross the road? TRB 2014

Posted on January 7, 2014

Note: In advance of the Transportation Research Board's annual meeting, the biggest forum on the transportation research calendar, OTREC.us is profiling some of the researchers who will present their work.

How long is too long to wait for the light to change? At stoplights, pedestrians often experience longer delays while cars are given priority.

To design traffic signals that serve the needs of walkers, planners must understand the motivations behind pedestrian behaviors.

Working with professors Kelly Clifton and Christopher MonsereSirisha Kothuri of Portland State University created a survey designed to shed some light on what makes pedestrians decide to follow, or not follow, traffic laws.

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Tags: active transportation, chris monsere, kelly clifton, livability, otrec, portland state university, sirisha kothuri, transportation research board, walking

OTREC researchers develop livability metrics for public transit

Posted on October 14, 2013

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has identified some “livability principles” which include healthy, safe and walkable neighborhoods and safe, reliable and economical transportation choices.

Transit agencies and local governments routinely use metrics to evaluate the performance of transit systems, but a uniform standard of transit data collection does not exist outside of the reporting requirements of the National Transit Database (NTD). Because of the types of data collected for the NTD, the focus of performance measurements is often on ridership and financial performance, leaving aside the question of livability.

In a new project sponsored by OTREC, Principal Investigator Marc Schlossberg, associate professor in the department of planning, public policy and management at the University of Oregon, along with co-investigators Jennifer Dill of Portland State University and Nico Larco, also of the University of Oregon, set out to create a set of tested and refined performance indicators that transit agencies across the nation can use to evaluate and improve their system performance in relation to livability goals.

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Tags: bus, livability, pedshed, performance metrics, transit, trimet

Pronovost bicycle lecture inspires advocacy and teamwork

Posted on August 28, 2013

The Initiative for Bicycle and Pedestrian Innovation (IBPI) opened the Ann Niles Transportation Lecture series Monday, August 26 with a talk by Jean-Francois Pronovost, the vice president for development and public affairs at advocacy group Vélo Québec.
 
The Ann Niles lecture series serves as a legacy to Ann Niles, who was a strong advocate for livable neighborhoods and served on many boards and committees related to transportation in Portland.
 
OTREC and IBPI are proud to be part of an ongoing collaborative effort to make Portland a more livable city.

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Tags: ann niles, bicycle, bicycle infrastructure, ibpi, livability, otrec, psu

Portland State University takes Seattle bike symposium by storm

Posted on June 26, 2013

Portland, Oregon is known for being a bike city, even called America's Best Bike City by Bicycling Magazine, so it's no surprise at all that Portland State University is full of bike enthusiasts.

Nowhere was that more clearly demonstrated than in Seattle last week, when 14 students and faculty from Portland State turned up to present their research at the International Bicycle Urbanism Symposium.
 
The Symposium, held on June 19-22 at the University of Washington, explored ways to plan cities around biking. There were international plenary panelists from China, The Netherlands, and New Zealand to offer a look at urban cycling around the world, and a mixture of research into bike-related planning efforts in the United States. 
 
Portland State was there in full force. Faculty researchers Jennifer Dill and John MacArthur presented research on the use of e-bikes in the United States, and what this could mean for the bicycle mode share.
 
PSU professor Miguel Figliozzi outlined ways of modeling the effects of weather on cycling ridership; a particularly relevant factor in the rainy Pacific Northwest. Krista Nordback, OTREC's resident bicycle counter, specializes in methods of counting bikes. She presented her research on counting bicyclists with the use of pneumatic tube counters on shared roadways.
 
Knowing the number of bicycles that cruise through an area on any given day can be important for policy decisions; for example, an intersection with a high amount of bike traffic might warrant a bike signal.
 
To learn more about what that bike signal might look like, you'd have to take a look at Sam Thompson's research: he presented a state-of-the-practice review of existing bicycle signals, which are federally unregulated and lack standardization across jurisdictions.

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Tags: active transportation, bicycle, bicycle infrastructure, bicycling, livability, otrec, portland state university

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