Post-implementation evaluation of the CMAQ program in Northeastern Illinois: phase I final report

Thakuriah, P., Lin, J., Metaxatos, P. and Jensen, E. (2010) Post-implementation evaluation of the CMAQ program in Northeastern Illinois: phase I final report. Technical Report. Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, Chicago, IL.

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This study evaluates a random sample of ten suburban bicycle and pedestrian facilities, eight of which were funded by the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) program in the Chicago metro area. Users of these facilities were surveyed in intercept mode during the summer of 2009, leading to 297 responses. The study of these non-motorized facilities showed relatively low usage levels but that motorized mode substitution (from personal car to bicycle and pedestrian modes) has resulted due to the facilities, potentially leading to improved air quality outcomes. There is also evidence of latent mode substitution, i.e., the current non-motorized trip could have been made by many respondents using motorized modes, but they chose not to. The majority of users cited recreation and exercise as the primary reason for using the facilities. Site-level factors play an important role in the propensity to switch from cars to bicycle and pedestrian use, controlling for individual factors. The propensity to switch from personal cars is lower for pedestrian facility users than for bicycle facility users in the sample. Since the facilities were selected randomly out of the universe of projects that were recently completed, it would appear that such considerations may need to be entered in factoring up emissions estimates from the sample to the total universe of CMAQ-funded bicycle and pedestrian facilities in similar suburbs. It would also be important to evaluate recently completed non-motorized projects in more densely populated areas with a greater degree of neighborhood design and street connectivity characteristics that support biking and walking, in order to fully generalize the results of the study to the entire population of CMAQ-funded bicycle and pedestrian projects in the Chicago metropolitan area. But the research design and data collection strategy utilized in this study are likely to provide a valid method for ex post evaluation of such projects. At the time of completing Phase 1 of the project, data were also collected from 10 signal interconnect and intersection improvement projects funded by CMAQ for the before period of a before-after study. These projects were at the letting stage at that time and we anticipate collecting the after data in Phase 2. The methods used to randomly select projects and to measure the traffic outputs were validated at this stage and would eventually lead us to complete the before-after study, including estimated emissions benefits.

Item Type:Research Reports or Papers (Technical Report)
Keywords:Congestion mitigation and air quality (CMAQ) program, travel behavior effects, motorized mode substitution, latent demand, evaluation, intercept survey, before-and-after study, air quality impacts, emissions, bicycling, walking, non-motorized, neighborhood design, street connectivity, signal interconnect, intersection improvement
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Thakuriah, Professor Piyushimita
Authors: Thakuriah, P., Lin, J., Metaxatos, P., and Jensen, E.
Subjects:G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HE Transportation and Communications
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Urban Studies
Publisher:Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning

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