Pedestrian Volume Modeling for Traffic Safety and Exposure Analysis: The Case of Boston, Massachusetts
This paper examines three types of pedestrian volume models in light of their usefulness for estimating pedestrian exposure for pedestrian safety research. The need for pedestrian flow data as part of pedestrian exposure and safety analysis is outlined, and the background of each type of model is discussed. It then selects the space syntax network analysis model to estimate pedestrian volumes for the city of Boston, Massachusetts. It was found that the model was able to accurately predict pedestrian flows (r-squared 0.81, p-value < 0.0001) after incorporating distance to transit stops and major tourist attractions. These findings suggest that in addition to estimating pedestrian volumes in geographic locations where data is not available, pedestrian volume modeling can also be useful for estimating pedestrian volumes in future conditions. Planning and policy implications are discussed, as are directions for future research.