TITLE

Development of a Pedestrian Walkability Database of Northern Kentucky Using Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

AUTHOR(S)
Hansen, William; Kalapasev, Ned; Gillespie, Amy; Singler, Mary; Ball, Marsha
PUB. DATE
May 2009
SOURCE
Journal of Physical Activity & Health;May2009, Vol. 6 Issue 3, p374
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Background: Rising obesity rates in the United States has spurred efforts by health advocates to encourage more active lifestyles including walking. Ensuring the availability, quality, and safety of pedestrian walkways has become an important issue for government at all levels. Methods: Pedestrian paths in Campbell County Kentucky were evaluated using a ranking criteria developed by the Walking and Bicycling Suitability Assessment (WABSA) project at the University of North Carolina School of Public Health. A pedestrian path Geographic Information System (GIS) data-layer was created, and mobile GIS units were used to assess the sidewalk segments using the ranking. Data from sidewalk surveys were compared with Census 2000 block group information on age of housing, population density, and household transportation characteristics to examine the correlation between these factors and sidewalk presence and quality. The analysis explored the use of census data to predict walkability factors and looked for trends in quality and availability of pedestrian paths over time. Results: Results showed higher overall scores for older urban areas adjacent to the Ohio River and Cincinnati. Housing built in the 1970s and 1980s showed the lowest scores, while more recent housing showed improvement over earlier decades. Age of housing was determined to be a useful predictor, while economic and population density attributes showed no correlation with walkability factors. Conclusion: Census housing age data are the most useful predictor of walkability demonstrating clear trends over time. The study shows improvements in walkways availability over the past few decades; however, infrastructure improvements are needed to provide more extensive pedestrian walkways and linkages between existing walkways in Campbell County.
ACCESSION #
41893126

 

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