Mapping the Impact of Traffic on the Livability of Streets

Donald Appleyard was a professor of Urban Design at the University of California, Berkeley. During his career he pursued a strong interest in the livability of cities and neighborhoods, particularly upon streets. In particular, he studied the social effects of traffic and neighborhood layout, and devised sensitive tools for the analysis of peoples’ environmental perceptions.

In aAgroundbreaking study [] conducted in 1969, Donald Appleyard provided the first emperical evidence of the impact of traffic on neighborhood streets. In particular, he investigated 3 different streets in San Francisco that were chosen to be as identical as possible in every dimension except for one - the amount of traffic on each street. The study was able to show that just the mere presence of cars, with their implied aspects of danger, noise and pollution, crushes the quality of life in neighborhoods.

As a way of investigation, Donals Appleyard used various visual graphics to both gather data as well as bring his results across. For instance, one chart conveys the social interactions on the 3 different streets, with each line denoting a unique connection between one person on the street and another. There are much fewer lines on the heavily traffic street as opposed to the moderate or the light traffic street, which clearly has a lot more interconnections. This chart also includes clusters of little dots that indicate where people physically gather. So it shows how on the heavily traffic street, there are a much smaller number of dots and there are only a handful of places where people would gather on their street.>


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Posted: November 16th, 2010
at 5:45pm by Koookiecrumbles

Categories: rush hour,maps

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