“Monitoring Movement within New York City”

“Monitoring Movement within New York City”

Tracking Mobility in New York City

Summary :

A new pilot program in New York City uses streetlight-mounted sensors to track people’s movement modes, including pedestrian, bike, scooter, car, and bus. The data collected can reveal patterns and “desire lines” that may not align with existing infrastructure. The sensors can also detect near misses between different modes of transportation and potentially identify dangerous spots. However, road safety advocates argue that the city already knows how to make streets safer and that new data won’t make a difference if the city doesn’t implement its own goals for fixing its streetscapes.

Description :

A new program utilizing sensors to detect how people move and through which modes has been implemented in New York City. However, road safety advocates argue that the city already possesses the knowledge on how to make streets safer for vulnerable users.

The program involves a new type of streetlight-mounted sensor that tracks people’s movement to better comprehend mobility patterns to inform transportation planning decisions. The sensors categorize movement into nine modes: pedestrian, bike, e-scooter, motorcycle, car, van, light truck, semi-truck, and bus, which generates maps highlighting the paths taken by pedestrians, cyclists, and other road users. These routes, referred to as “desire lines,” may not align with existing infrastructure, but they offer valuable insights.

The ability of the sensors to track near misses, where two paths almost cross but do not, has the potential to identify hazardous spots before accidents occur. The implementation of the program is fundamental as “understanding how people use streets is crucial information for transportation planners to recommend adaptive changes (a wider bike lane, a mid-block crosswalk),” explains Alissa Walker in Curbed. However, there is already a wealth of knowledge on how to proactively prevent crashes by slowing down drivers and allocating more space for pedestrians, cyclists, and transit riders.

Although the new data is incredibly detailed, its implementation won’t make people feel safer unless there is a willingness to act on existing street safety goals.

1- melk360.com ,Tracking Mobility in New York City ,2023-04-17 12:00:00
2- https://www.planetizen.com/news/2023/04/122641-tracking-mobility-new-york-city?rand=493

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