This chapter focuses on how to leverage public transport infrastructure to produce walk-friendly environments, positioning public transport as a walk-enhancing mode. What are the steps that public transport operators can take to create walk-friendly environments? Do more comfortable waiting conditions result in stronger loyalty from the existing customer base and stronger buyout from new customers? This novel approach stemmed from a partnership with the public transport operator Transdev on a real-life experiment in Grenoble to provide a more comfortable walking and resting experience for public transport users. Named Carrefour de Mobilité (‘the crossroads of mobility’), the experiment prototyped urban design interventions to enhance the access and waiting experience of users engaged in mixed-mode commuting. An ex ante/ex post evaluation was deployed to ascertain whether walk-friendlier environments encourage a more intensive use of public space and easier shifting between public transport modes. The findings show that when users perceive dedicated infrastructure as walk-friendly, they consider it more visible and more attractive, and find it comfortable enough to spend longer waiting times there. The evaluation would have benefited from an extension of the perimeter covered by the sensor technology measuring system which was not feasible because of budget constraints. The experiment reached out beyond the initial target public and captured children and older women as well, providing an amenity which was lacking for these groups and resulting in a livelier and more diverse environment for everyone. This lean and low-cost experiment shows that activating public space near public transport hubs enhances their attractiveness in the eyes of the public transport users.
Lavadinho, S. (2017), "Public Transport Infrastructure and Walking: Gearing Towards the Multimodal City", Walking (Transport and Sustainability, Vol. 9), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 167-186. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2044-994120170000009011
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