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Document Type

Open Access

Degree Program

Civil Engineering

Degree Type

Master of Science in Civil Engineering (M.S.C.E.)

Year Degree Awarded

January 2008

Month Degree Awarded

May

Keywords

Traffic Calming, Traffic Safety, Urban Transportation, Community Livability

Abstract

This thesis presents a collection of network optimization strategies aimed at aiding the local practitioner in selecting, implementing, and evaluating appropriate strategies to achieve community goals and objectives in the urban environment. The urban environment is often challenging due to the plethora of activity and variety in mode choice. Growing interest in sustainable transportation practices along with encouragement at the Federal, State, and Local levels to is leading to the growing use of non-motorized modes of transportation such as walking and bicycling. The combination of high population density and mixed land use in the urban environment creates unique safety and operational challenges.

This research presents a synthesis of strategies designed to improve local transportation safety and efficiency by targeting speeding and cut-through volumes as improving pedestrian and bicycle facilities in urban areas such as those found in Western Massachusetts. Additionally, this research evaluates two local network optimization strategies; speed cushions and reverse angle parking. The effectiveness of the speed cushions in achieving the community’s goal of reducing speeds was evaluated and determined to be a recommended strategy for future implementation, especially when couple with enforcement. Reverse angle parking, however, was not determined to be an effective strategy due to the high occurrence of events as well as lower parking volume exhibited during implementation.

First Advisor

Michael A. Knodler

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