Center for Urban Walkability Research
Walking is associated with many well-known health, functional, social and environmental benefits, especially in cities. Consequently, as environmental issues (e.g., global warming) gain priority much effort is now being directed towards making urban environments more sustainable and pedestrian-friendly, i.e., walkable environment. Walkability research deals with the extent to which the built environment facilitates or hinders walking for daily life purposes. In light of this, the aims of this research center are as follows:
To promote advanced inter-disciplinary research on the relation of walkability – morphological, functional, social and cultural characteristics of urban environments – with walking behavior attributes (e.g., walking distances) and pedestrians’ perceptual and cognitive aspects.
To promote development of advanced tools for measuring, analyzing, mapping and simulating walkability conditions and waking behavior.
To enable implementation of empirical knowledge and advanced tools for enhancing walkability and pedestrian movement by local authorities, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and urban/transportation planners.
To enhance using of pedestrian movement as a means of achieving urban planning goals such as urban renewal, social-functional integration between urban areas and the vitality of the city.
The activity of the center is based on national and international academic networking as well as interactions with local organization and authorities.
Prof. Itzhak Omer, Porter School of the Environment and Earth Sciences