Pedestrian Traffic in the French Quarter
2017 Building Community Exhibition - October 26-27th 2017 IDS Center Crystal Court

Recent Projects

Enhancing the Pedestrian and Bike User Experience in Downtown Alexandria MN

Peter conducted walking audits of the shopper physical and visual experience in downtown Alexandria MN.  City staff, Douglas County Health Department staff, Tourism and Convention Bureau staff, and downtown store owners and Downtown Business Association leaders provided input to the Walking Connections analysis.   Exact placement and design of sidewalk amenities and wayfinding elements which would reinforce the vital Walking Connections and retail traffic were discussed and shown in detailed maps.  The visual cues that would lure traffic to the ends of each block on the main shopping street were electronic information kiosks, public art, and wayfinding signs for drivers and pedestrians/bikers, parking lot identity signs, improved signage and design of storefront and parking lot entrances, and installation of walking time signs at visitor traffic generators. Temporary placement of small platforms (parklets) filling a parking space next to the curb was also recommended.  

Peter worked with store owners to better lure pedestrian and bike shoppers along retail blocks in downtown Alexandria MN. Individual interviews were conducted with 15 store owners regarding simple and affordable visual changes they could make to attract more people to their stores from the street and parking lots.   Guiding implementation of the recommended changes will be done in the next phase of the Walking Connections project.

Temporary Wayfinding System for Pedestrians and Bikers During Street Reconstruction in Alexandria MN

A temporary Wayfinding System and Media Information Kit were developed for the downtown business community and city staff. The temporary route wayfinding signs, public art reinforcing new walking connections, new kiosks with store maps and changeable event calendars are being considered for implementation during spring 2014. The Wayfinding System will feature very visible wayfinding elements such as downtown store maps, parking lot identifiers and location signs for people in cars and on foot looking for parking lots in the nearby retail core of Alexandria, and gateway features at downtown entrances. Improving the aesthetic pull of the parking-to-store walking connections for downtown workers, downtown residents and tourists will be further addressed during summer 2014.

Increasing Foot Traffic in Retail Districts

Design and installation of an electronic kiosk with continual updating of weather forecast and events calendar, and periodic updating of store directories.  
Client: City of  Buffalo MN

Audit of the pedestrian experience related to sidewalk access to shopping centers,  wayfinding for drivers and walkers, transit stops, crime perceptions, and use of a new pedestrian trail/greenway in a residential development.  Positive and negative elements for pedestrian movement were identified with recommendations for implementing changes.   
Clients: Hennepin County and Brooklyn Park MN

Observations on jaywalking by Southdale Target Store vicinity, roundabout ped-car conflicts between Target and Galleria Center, and use of new city’s Promenade Pedestrian and Bike Trail for connections between housing and retail buildings. Clients: Hennepin County and City of Edina MN

Analysis of the pedestrian traffic volumes and patterns in a traditional 2-block main street area.   Recommendations addressed streetscape amenity maintenance, improving and expanding a program of store signs on sandwich boards,  promoting front door sidewalk connectivity between stores which orient to back doors on a public parking lot, and visually connecting and marketing to transit hub users.  
Clients: Robbinsdale MN and Hennepin County

Increasing Foot Traffic in A Large City Retail District

Measuring sidewalk pedestrian traffic and auditing Walking Connection strengths and weaknesses in a large downtown retail core. The shopping environment on two major streets in downtown was audited for pedestrian friendliness, visual aesthetics and activity voids.  Problems were documented for city staff use. Future work could involve developing a pedestrian realm enhancement strategy that involved building owners and activation of the streetscape.  
Client: Orlando FL

Analyzing Sources of Sidewalk Congestion at Bus Stops and LRT Stations

Documenting the need for public sector resources to alleviate bus stop crowding

Pedestrian Studies, working for retail owners, determined volumes of sidewalk and bus stop user traffic at major bus stops and LRT stations in downtown Minneapolis retail area.  In one study, measures of sidewalk congestion were developed for a bus stop in a downtown retail core.   The number of riders from each of the major transit routes serving the stop were documented.  Some routes were moved from the bus stop by the transit authority allowing for a more clear and friendly sidewalk next to the building and a more attractive street front retail zone at this major retail corner.   Vacant retail space bordering the stop is now being marketed  

Another large retail building contracted Pedestrian Studies to count the people waiting at a new bus stop bordering their busy retail atrium.  The counts may be shown to by the building owner to managers of stores in the building atrium to encourage them to cater to the bus stop users.  Shopper behavior affected by new real time bus arrival signs at the stop was also studied, to determine how to encourage more use of the building convenience retail .  

Bus stop user counts and walking patterns related to a busy commuter bus stop were studied for the adjacent building owner who had concerns about bus stop users congesting the building hallway adjacent to the stop.    

First Baseline Traffic Measurement for Repositioning of a Community Retail Center In A Large East Coast Metropolitan Area - Study Not Released

A cordon count of pedestrians and car riders entering the parking lot and walking into a community shopping center were conducted during a 7-day period in December. Sidewalk traffic walking by the center on an adjacent street was also measured. The study was conducted for a private owner looking for re-positioning of the center’s retail mix and documentation of visibility to potential shoppers from all sides of the property.    Challenges in the study included: counting of car riders in dark hours of the evening, supervision of a large data collection staff over a 7-day period, and protecting staff from the cold conditions.  Nearby traffic generators included a Walgreen’s (2 minute walk), McDonald’s across street, a national restaurant chain store, and major bank with ATM’s.  

Encouraging pedestrian activity in commercial nodes and corridors

The Hennepin County Department of Housing, Community Works and Transit (which serves the city of Minneapolis and many of its suburbs) commissioned Pedestrian Studies to audit pedestrian activity and provide recommendations for increasing pedestrian friendliness. Barriers and opportunities related to pedestrian activity were surveyed in the field and determined through interviews of retail and residential property managers, business owners, parks staff, and police. Traffic volumes were sampled to provide an overview of how commercial zones are serving pedestrians.

Factors discouraging traffic included poor retail health, poor visual appearance and image, uncoordinated retail operations, limited transit service, perceptions of crime, convenient but dangerous jaywalking opportunities, and the absences of sidewalks. Short term and long term action plans addressed the possible need for resources and partners to improve walkability and foot traffic volumes were submitted to five cities.


Pedestrian opinions/responses to a public art installation in a downtown skyway

Surveys were conducted of pedestrians along Nicollet Mall sidewalks in Minneapolis, Minn., to determine their opinion of a temporary public art installation above them. The Forecast Public Art project involves the installation of translucent photomurals on glass walls of a skyway above the mall. The consultant service also included observing pedestrian interaction with the exhibit inside the skyway bridge.


24th Annual Downtown Minneapolis and Saint Paul Pedestrian Count Projects for Private Owners

Annual pedestrian counts have been conducted since 1991 for building owners, leasing agents, and prospective retail tenants.  The media typically reports on the results of the traffic study.  In 2013, Minneapolis downtown traffic volumes rose 11 percent from their historical average, and Saint Paul downtown traffic volumes increased an average of 44 percent from the levels recorded in the prior 5 years. Private owners comprise the large majority of clients.  Minneapolis Downtown Council, Minneapolis Public Works and retail store chains are also clients.

Designing a pedestrian kiosk to generate downtown foot traffic

Assisting the City of Buffalo, Minn., in the selection of a structural and graphic design for an electronic, remote-controlled outdoor kiosk on a key retail corner downtown. The kiosk will feature a retail directory and map as well as an event calendar that can be updated with the push of a button. Community images will be printed on backlit side panels. The illuminated color panels on the kiosk will act as beacons to foot traffic and be visible from 1 block away in each direction. Pedestrian Studies proposed the project to the city and has managed the kiosk vendor selection and design process.


Understanding and affecting jaywalking behavior at LRT Stations

Pedestrian crossings were counted within and outside of crosswalks on Hiawatha Avenue and the adjacent light rail transit route in Minneapolis, Minn., for Hennepin County. The objective was to measure the illegal and legal crossing behavior to determine the scale of the jaywalking problem on this busy arterial. Recommendations on how to minimize the jaywalking behavior may include signage and physical changes in the street medians or curb edges to discourage jaywalkers.


Study of Target Field and adjacent transit hub

Studies relating to pedestrian traffic issues in and around the downtown Minneapolis, Minn., Interchange Transit Hub and its adjacent Twins ballpark (completed in 2010) were performed a few months before the Major League teamís home opener.


Kiosks at airports and transit terminals

Kiosk design and information†changes were recommended for a retail mall at a Midwestern U.S. airport.†Research included determining pedestrian traffic routes in large intersections, measuring traffic volumes by a kiosk at a busy†intersection of walking routes, observing†user interaction with the kiosk, interviewing users to determine needs and preferences.

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