Monday, July 13, 2015

A Good Walk in Moscow

The Moscow design company Urbica has been carrying out research into what makes a city attractive to pedestrians. From a survey of walkers they discovered that among the top considerations of pedestrians are:
  • streets with 'green areas & trees'
  • wide & smooth sidewalks
  • minimal road traffic
  • points of interest (landmarks, architecture etc)
Using the survey results as a starting point Urbica has set out to build a better map for pedestrians. Walking Streets is an early prototype of a Moscow map for pedestrians which includes information on sidewalk conditions, street noise, accessibility and points of interest.

The 'Sidewalks' section of the map colors roads on the map by the width of the sidewalks. Click on a road on the map and you can discover the width of the sidewalk. You can also view images of the street from Mapillary.

The 'Accessibility' section of the map provides very useful information for wheelchair users and other walkers who might struggle with steps. The map rates public buildings and businesses by their accessibility. The buildings are given one of three ratings, 'accessible', 'limited' or 'not accessible'.

The 'Street Noise' section of the map colors the roads on the map based on noise levels. The map also includes a number of markers where noise levels have been recorded. Click on these markers and you can find out the number of decibels reported at that location.

The last section 'Popular Places' shows points of interest in Moscow. These points of interest on the map are sized by their popularity on Wikipedia.

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