Statistical analysis of pedestrian perceptions of sidewalk level of service in the presence of bicycles

Gaining a better understanding of pedestrian perceptions of level of service (LOS) in urban areas can be useful in developing strategies for providing a comfortable and safe walking environment. Using a sample of 114 respondents, this research studies how pedestrians perceive LOS on sidewalks shared with bicycles under various urban-street conditions. To do this, 15 carefully constructed video clips of Chinese urban sidewalks are presented to respondents and, after each 60-s video clip, respondents were asked to assess the pedestrian level of service in the video on a scale from LOS A (the most comfortable pedestrian environment) to LOS F (the least comfortable pedestrian environment). By estimating random parameters ordered probability models of respondents’ LOS assessments (to account for unobserved heterogeneity across respondents) the authors found, as expected, that pedestrian perceptions of LOS are strongly influenced by the pedestrian flow rate. However, many other factors were found to significantly affect LOS perceptions including sidewalk width, the presence of a barrier separating the sidewalk from motor-vehicle traffic, the presence of parking next to the sidewalk, the presence of businesses along the sidewalk, the bicycle flow rate, the speed of bicyclist, whether or not bicycles were riding against the flow of pedestrians, weather conditions, time of day, and age of the respondent. The specific impacts of the wide variety of factors that affect pedestrian perceptions of LOS suggest that a number of important tradeoffs need to be considered when planning pedestrian facilities.


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  • Accession Number: 01493598
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 4 2013 11:39AM