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Project Type
UTRC Research Initiative
Project Dates
03/01/2014 - 12/31/2015
Principal Investigators
Project Status

Objectives: The primary objective of the proposed series of urban outdoor lighting demonstrations is to validate prior research findings suggesting a role for enhanced perceptions of brightness and personal security under light sources varying in their spectral (color) content, and suggesting that pedestrian-level lighting in crosswalks and other conflict areas can enhance pedestrian safety by making them more visible to drivers in congested urban areas.

Scope: The primary planned activities are a series of short-term lighting demonstration installations in an urban plaza location in downtown Schenectady, measuring pedestrian perceptions of brightness, safety, and personal security, and observing vehicle-pedestrian interactions in traffic conflict areas.

Methodology: In collaboration with the Schenectady County Metroplex Development Authority, the Lighting Research Center will develop equipment for a series of short-term lighting demonstrations in downtown Schenectady. Specifically, the demonstrations will focus on: 1) Perceptions of outdoor scene brightness from light sources varying in spectral content in order to confirm the relationship between perceived brightness of an outdoor location and the perceived sense of security of pedestrians. 2) Use of pedestrian level bollard luminaires along crosswalks and related traffic/pedestrian conflict areas in order to maximize the visibility of pedestrians by drivers approaching areas such as mid-block crossings that can be hazardous for pedestrians. 3) The use of lighting in congested urban areas to reinforce wayfinding to possibly unfamiliar parking lots and garages, especially during events such as concerts and other major venues which attract attendees who may not be familiar with the urban location.

Results: We expect that the results of the demonstrations and analysis of the findings from surveys, interviews, focus groups and field measurements will provide validation of previous research results while confirming that these research findings have practical applications in urban locations such as downtowns. The results will be summarized into practical guidelines for implementing similar installations by practitioners throughout Region 2.