An evaluation of pedestrian bus stop accessibility through the existing sidewalk network in Austin, Texas
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This study explores neighborhood bus stop accessibility through the currently existing sidewalk network in Austin, Texas. The main methodology for this analysis involves the use of GIS Network Analyst. This topic is important for the City of Austin because it is currently missing a significant portion of their sidewalk network yet sidewalks provide an essential part of mobility infrastructure, especially for access to public transit. The use of public transit is becoming increasingly important in order to address sustainability, health, and transportation issues that are almost universally found across large urban areas. The GIS based approach used in this study focuses on residential building accessibility from bus stops across the City of Austin. Results show that the best-connected neighborhoods are not the ones with the most complete sidewalk networks. Instead, the availability of bus stops in the neighborhood is what was most associated with neighborhood connectivity. Results also show enormous increases in residential building accessibility to bus stops through a full build out of sidewalks found at 5, 10, and 15 minute pedestrian service areas.