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Desirable pedestrian density

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Desirable pedestrian density

Nouri, Pegah (2011) Desirable pedestrian density. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Studies of the effects of crowding have been conducted in different environments, but almost exclusively within indoor spaces, while outdoor spaces have largely been unstudied. In this study, the desirability of different levels of crowding is studied on a main street in downtown Montreal. Like most of the crowding studies, the methodology used for this research is a visual preference survey; however, using videos to represent density is novel in the field. It is discussed in previous studies that respondents perceive these two methods (representation with picture and videos) differently. Other variables considered in the responses are gender, culture, location of the case study, and density level.
The main finding of this study is that there is an inverted U-shaped relation between density and desirability, which means that as density increases the desirability increases up to the critical point and then starts to diminish. The inverted U-shaped function has been observed elsewhere in studies of environmental aesthetics. Other independent variables –gender, cultural background and location– did not have a significant effect on expressed desirability.
The results of this study add to the empirical evidence of commonly held levels of desirable pedestrian density in public spaces. The U-shaped response curve is a new finding. The results of this study show that few or no people can be as undesirable as high levels of crowding. The results could lead to a better allocation of space for public use, in relation to the level of use of the space.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Geography, Planning and Environment
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Nouri, Pegah
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M. Sc.
Program:Geography, Urban & Environmental Studies
Date:15 April 2011
Thesis Supervisor(s):Zacharias, John
Keywords:Pedestrian density, proximity, visual preference, perceived density, inverted U-shaped
ID Code:7261
Deposited By:PEGAH NOURI
Deposited On:13 Jun 2011 09:15
Last Modified:18 Jan 2013 13:50
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