Marlon Boarnet on Walking in the Suburbs

Calendar – USC School of Policy, Planning, and Development Retrofitting the Suburbs to Increase Walking: Evidence from a Land-Use Travel Study by Marlon Boarnet

Retrofitting the Suburbs to Increase Walking: Evidence from a Land Use – Travel Study

METRANS Research Seminar

When: Tuesday, March 9, 2010 : 12:00pm

Location: University Park Campus, Ralph and Goldy Lewis Hall (RGL), Room 103

Marlon Boarnet
Professor of Planning, Policy, and Design and Economics, UC Irvine

We report results from a detailed travel diary survey of 2,125 residents in the South Bay area of Los Angeles County – a mature, auto- oriented suburban region. Study areas were divided into four centers, typical of compact development or Smart Growth, and four linear, auto-oriented corridors. Results show substantial variation in the amount of walking across study areas. Trips are shorter and more likely to be via walking in centers. A key to the centers’ increased walking travel is the concentration of local shopping and service destinations in a commercial core. Yet the scale of business concentration that is associated with highly pedestrian-oriented neighborhoods is from three to four times as large as what can be supported by the local resident base, suggesting that pedestrian oriented neighborhoods necessarily import shopping trips, and hence driving trips, from larger surrounding catchment areas. The results suggest both land use and mobility strategies that can be appropriate for suburban regions.

About the Speaker:
Marlon Boarnet is Professor of Planning, Policy, and Design and Economics at UC Irvine, and from 2003 through 2006 he chaired UC Irvine’s Department of Planning, Policy, and Design. He has studied land use – travel behavior interactions, urban growth patterns, the economic impacts of transportation infrastructure, and economic development. Boarnet is co-author, with Randall Crane, of Travel by Design: The Influence of Urban Form on Travel (Oxford University Press, 2001). Boarnet is ranked among the top ten most published planning scholars in North America for the years 1998 through 2002. Boarnet edits the Journal of Regional Science, he serves as an associate editor of the Journal of the American Planning Association and is on the editorial boards of the Journal of Planning Literature and the Papers in Regional Science. Boarnet was a member of the National Academy of Sciences / National Research Council Committee on “Relationships Among Development Patterns, Vehicle Miles Traveled, and Energy Consumption.” That committee authored the recent report “Driving and the Built Environment.” Boarnet’s research has been supported by agencies that include the U.S. and California Departments of Transportation, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the California Policy Research Center, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Boarnet has provided consulting services to the World Bank, the Bay Area Economic Forum, the Orange County Business Council, and the Urban Land Institute, among others.

Lunch will be served on the patio as no food is allowed in the room, so please note that you must RSVP by Monday if you would like a meal. Please also arrive at noon in order to guarantee yourself enough time to eat because the seminar will start promptly at 12:30 p.m.

RSVP to Vicki Valentine, by noon on Monday, March 8.