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Increasingly, federal transportation and public health agencies are working together to identify transportation investments that improve public health. Investments in transportation infrastructure represent one method to utilize transportation to improve public health outcomes. The ideal transportation investment is one that not only provides safe access for pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders, but it also promotes more utilitarian or recreational trips for walking and biking in an environment of safe air quality. However, public health objectives can be at conflict when designing transportation infrastructure to support active commuting. For example, infrastructure investments may be made that promote physical activity through utilitarian commuting, yet at the same time, the investment may be made in an area that is characterized by poor air quality or creates an unsafe condition. The purpose of the research is to identify potential performance measures that can foster improved decision making around these investments. The key research contribution is the development of performance measures that can be used in the field to evaluate multiple public health concerns and improve decision making. Secondly, it advances strategies to effectively capture the dimension of safety and physical activity in a manner that considers the conditions under which pedestrian and bicycling activity is likely to increase. The objectives of the project are accomplished through the use and integration of multiple methods, including student-based project learning, expert surveys, content analysis and quantitative statistical techniques.

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TRCLC 14-02