2019 June Seminar: Multi-modal Traffic Impacts and Planning

Wednesday 5th June 2019

Hosted by PWC, Transport Advisory Group

Article by Laura Aston (Monash University and ITE-ANZ co-vice president, 2019)

What are the gaps and opportunities in current approaches to travel management planning for new developments – both residential and commercial? What can we learn from international experience?

Three presentations at the ITE-ANZ June seminar explored these questions and demonstrated the importance of context when integrating transportation facilities into new developments. See the video links to their presentations, and read on for key insights from their presentations.

  1. Chris De Gruyter(Vice-Chancellor’s Research Fellow, RMIT)  9:53

Exploring multi-modal trip generation research

Chris’ presentation explored the approaches taken to researching trip generation rates of land use from the last 30-40. This research has informed the estimation and accommodation of transport impacts when planning new developments. The overprovision of motor vehicle infrastructure is a results of shortcomings in the way these methods account for impacts from public transport and active transport.

Chris’ research identifies a shift away from count methods to more comprehensive and survey-based methods for collecting and generating trip generation rates.

Key issues associated with current approaches include:

  1. A lack of sufficient multimodal trip generation data
  2. Resource intensive data collection
  3. Traffic Impact Assessment methodologies based on ‘vehicle’ trips
  4. Small sample sizes for studies that explore non-car modes
  5. Large variability associated with site context – for example, private vehicle modeshare for Melbourne apartment buildings ranges from 10% (the Commons) to 45%.

Key directions for estimating multi-nodal traffic impacts:

Databases such as the ITE trip generation manaual, TRICs database and TDB have the potential to be integrated to provide an international multimodal trip generation database. A new paradigm, whereby TIA and trip generation guidelines require consistent accounting for multimodal traffic impacts, is needed. Given the variability in trip generation rates, factors with sensitivity estimates (ranges) might be useful for planning.

The paper on which Chris’ presentation was based, Multimodal Trip Generation from Land Use Developments: International Synthesis and Future Directions, has been published in the Transportation Research Record, available through subscription at https://doi.org/10.1177/0361198119833967.

A summary of his findings is also available in the Conversation: Crowded trains? Planning focus on cars misses new apartment impacts

  1. Kristie Currans(Assistant Professor, Planning from the University of Arizona) 35:56

The TEe Trip Generation: Then and Now

In a first for ITE-ANZ, Kristie’s presentation was delivered via high-quality pre-recorded video. The ITE Trip Generation Manual features in the reading list or library reserves of most transport engineering disciplines. Kristie recently completed a PhD which resulted in the identification of gaps and suggested improvements to the methodologies used to collect the inputs to the  ITE manual.

Kristie’s presentation highlighted key changes in the fifth edition of the ITE Trip Generation Manual:

  1. People are recognised as the driver behind travel decisions
  2. Introduction of context specific place types, such as center city core, dense multi use urban areas and general suburban
  3. Outdated data is being decommissioned
  4. Some land use types removed and streamlined, some new ones added

Kristie and associate Kellie Clifton have established a business that seeks to help agencies in the US implement strategies formulated around her transport planning research. More info: http://www.clifton-currans.com/

  1. Kirsten Land and Mark Rowland (Associates, Arup) 51:05

How can Movement and Place deliver outcomes for Transport Projects?

What makes a good street design guide? According to Mark Rowland, good design guides such as Auckland’s Design Principles convey an intent without overprescribing the details. It is then over to design thinking to deliver on this. This is true for the new planning guide for Melbourne, the Movement and Place Framework, that supplants SmartRoads as a guide to prioritising movement, access and the added consideration of place.  By applying outcome-led design, more Victorian business cases can embed the principles of Movement and Place.

Kirsten discussed a recent urban renewal project undertaken by Arup during the era of Smartroads, the Ringwood Station Upgrade. The project was reimagined as if the the design had been more focused on the Place aspect of M&P. Three questions to consider when classifying a place are:

  1. Who does it serve?
  2. How is the place used?
  3. What activity is occurring

This translates the engineering objectives of a project, which might include ‘public transport connectivity, traffic calming or integration with surrounding land uses’ to the people-focused and mode agnostic objectives of:

  • Accessibility
  • Economic inclusion
  • Amenity and liveability
  • Facilities