Three New Forms of Movement That Encourage Walkable Urban Designs

New movement technology is currently becoming reality around the world. PRT (Personal Rapid Transit) now sometimes called ATN (Automated Transit Network) is currently available at Heathrow airport with systems in various planning stages in South Korea, San Jose, CA -Sam Mineta Airport, and Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates - Mazdar City. Technology that allows elevators to move three-dimensionally is currently applied in the Tower of Terror ride at Disneyland, Anaheim, CA. New automobiles are appearing highlighting electric power sources, smaller sizes and even collapsible -- such as the City Mobile car designed at MIT. All of these technologies offer one new important design feature – their ability to interface three-dimensionally both inside and outside of buildings. They can also simultaneously provide freight applications and link multiple transit systems, changing transportations’ relationship with urban design and architecture. These new technologies provide the opportunity to create more walkable transit friendly environments by allowing more compact and interconnected ways to design and move through space. They have the ability to arrive more quickly to their destination – even more time-efficiently than a car and more time-efficient than the standard transit loop or line systems; therefore they can encourage and hopefully increase transit use. New integrated solutions that address multiple overlapping issues such as energy sources, the environment and persons of disability accessibility can also be addressed. Several key issues are involved in encouraging more transit use and the solution lies in their interfaces and overlaps, not in their isolation. The issues are: (1) mode of transportation, (2) energy source/sustainability, (3) human interface, (4) physical location, and (5) actual design. All of these issues will be explored independently and then with their interfaces and overlaps providing solutions that these new technologies allow. Integrating new forms of movement is a more sustainable solution that allows for stations within easy walking distance encouraging walking. Initially these systems are being implemented in two areas – local existing environments such as airports and entirely new cities. This paper will examine the linkages for the Southern Polytechnic Campus of 2050 using one or all of these new technologies to create a more fully accessible walkable sustainable campus design. PRT was first implemented in the United States at Morgantown, West Virginia at West Virginia University using small point-to-point driverless vehicles (a system where you go directly from your point of origin to your final destination – no stops in between) called Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) and the system is still functioning today providing unique transportation choices for the university and the town. With the vehicles providing an on demand, point to point service; a small transit vehicle (optimal number is around 4 people) offers many positive benefits along with greater capabilities to move more people more time efficiently. The off-line station concept that is crucial to the efficient functioning of the on demand, point-to-point system presents some new opportunities for station design. This transit system, PRT, has the capabilities to link the 5 key issues mentioned above. The system also allows for expansion of use as needed with only the cost of additional vehicles. The original vehicles upfront costs could be limited to a small fleet; expansion as appropriate. The other technologies offer similar benefits in unique ways. These newly emerging movement systems will allow easier access for all ages as station design can now be integrated within buildings at multiple levels. Navigating steep topography as well as connecting multiple other forms of transit to create a seamless system will allow faster and smoother access for all. Linking spaces and places in entirely new ways, the architects’ unique spatial training will become essential in allowing these new technologies to be implemented to their full potential. The students’ analysis of existing conditions as well as their unique solutions to connections and interconnections will be presented along with a review of the technologies and their connections to automobiles and other forms of transit.


Issue Date:
2010-03
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation
Record Identifier:
http://ageconsearch.umn.edu/record/207469
PURL Identifier:
http://purl.umn.edu/207469
Total Pages:
15




 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-23

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