Urban Environment

Locating Bike Sharing Stations (02-07-20)

Recently completed research indicates that potential users of bike sharing services are not willing to walk much to pick up that shared bike.  Girotra, Belavina, and Kabra determined that Even a relatively short walk to find the nearest bicycle is enough to deter many potential users of bike sharing systems. . . . outside of a few big stations at major transit hubs, cities and bike-share operators should strive to create denser networks with many smaller stations . . .  and keep them stocked.. . . .

Urban Design and Transport Injuries (02-04-20)

A study published in the medical journal The Lancet links urban design to road transport injuries. Thompson lead a study during which “1692 cities capturing one third of the world's population were classified into types based on urban design characteristics. . . . road transport injury was an estimated two-times higher . . . for the poorest performing city type compared with the best performing city type, culminating in an estimated loss of 8·71 (8·08–9·25) million disability-adjusted life-years per year attributable to suboptimal urban design.

Urban Design and Earth-Friendly Behavior (01-17-19)

Researchers have linked urban experiences and green behavior.  A press release from the University of Exeter reports that “People who live in more built up areas and spend less free-time in nature are also less likely to take actions that benefit the environment, such as recycling, buying eco-friendly products, and environmental volunteering. . . .policies to preserve and develop urban green spaces, and support urban populations reconnect with nearby nature, could help meet sustainability targets and reduce carbon emissions.. . . Dr. Ian Alcock . . . said: ‘. . .

Urban Design and Sprawl (01-15-19)

Researchers from McGill and the University of California, Santa Cruz have identified a cause of increasing urban sprawl. Barrington-Leigh and Millard-Ball report that “the local streets of the world’s cities are becoming less connected, a global trend that is driving urban sprawl and discouraging the use of public transportation. . . . in large parts of the world, recent urban growth has increasingly resulted in inflexible and disconnected street networks. . . . Gridded street networks . . . promote efficient, dense urban form in Bolivia, Argentina and Peru.

Sensory Interactions (12-03-19)

Jeon and Jo studied the effects of visual and acoustic information on satisfaction with urban environments and it is likely that their findings are applicable in other contexts.  The duo determined that when “Actual site conditions were simulated using immersive virtual reality technology in which subjects were provided with visual information via a head-mounted display (HMD) and audio information via head-tracking technology using the first-order ambisonics (FOA) of headphone-based three-dimensional auralization. . . .

Lynch Today (10-23-19)

Park and Evans assessed the current relevance of Lynch’s work.  They share that “Kevin Lynch’s The Image of the City (1960) identified five physical elements—path, edge, district, node, and landmark—that are the building blocks of place.  Both the physical and sociocultural function of these elements, along with their locations, affects how we comprehend (legibility) and generate meaning of place (imageability). . . . dependence on LBS [location-based services, online applications that reflect users’ geographic locations and include navigation apps . . local weather functions. . .

Greenspaces and Health (10-04-19)

Keijzer and colleagues set out to confirm the health benefits of living near greenspaces.  They determined that “More residential surrounding greenspace was associated with lower risk of metabolic syndrome. . . . Metabolic syndrome is an important risk factor for non-communicable diseases, particularly type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, and stroke. . . . The present longitudinal study was based on data from four clinical examinations between 1997 and 2013 in 6076 participants of the Whitehall II study, UK (aged 45–69 years at baseline).

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