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Project Type
Faculty-Initiated Research
Project Dates
06/01/2015 - 08/31/2017
Principal Investigators
Project Status

New York City has been affected by extreme weather events in the last few years. In New York City access to public transit is critical to individuals making decisions about whether to evacuate and go to a shelter or somewhere further away, or to stay in place. The goal of the proposed research is to evaluate public transit services in areas considered to be at high risk for flooding in New York City and to provide a tool that can help transportation planners and city officials improve these services during evacuations. As part of the research the characteristics of public transit in Zone 1 evacuation areas in relation to the socioeconomic characteristics of the communities that live there. This includes examining proximity to public transit stops, including bus and subway services, multi-modal transportation connectivity, and distance to nearest shelters. A review of the literature on transportation factors that affect decisions to evacuate, statistical analyses and GIS analyses would provide inputs for the development of a transit evacuation vulnerability index that could help planners and agencies identify vulnerable communities or vulnerable clusters within communities. The transit evacuation vulnerability index would include traditional variables included in social vulnerability and hazard indexes such as percent poor and percent elderly, and would also include measures of proximity to public transit, distance to shelters, vehicle ownership rates, multi-modal transit connectivity and others. The analyses resulting from this research work could provide Region II's transportation planners and agencies with valuable inputs to projects and policies aimed at expanding or improving public transit services in support of evacuation efforts or broader policies aimed at making communities more livable and resilient.