Join us to participate in the upcoming 2019 City:One Challenge. 

Quick-Build Implementation of Complete Streets for All Ages, Abilities, and Future Technologies

Design-Build a Network of Connected Protected Urban Mobility Lanes. Standardize the delivery to Enable city staff to expand the network!

Photo of Vignesh Swaminathan
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Many of the problems modern city streets face can be solved with good street design. You adjust the UI/UX of the system; Users habits and actions change. You can’t tweak a freeway, but we can create a public plaza, a protected bike lane, a dedicated bus lane. These are the features of modern cities and can be made quickly and adjusted fast. So maybe it’s no surprise that, in the last decade, some U.S. cities have been creating new models for project delivery and implementation that rethink the bureaucratic processes developed during the freeway era.

Austin is a perfect city transitioning from sprawl to dense living. Design vehicles are changing  to scooters. We don't need large industrial trucks carrying goods. We need protected bike lanes carrying employees. this is vital as the city turns from an industrial center to a technology center. As scooters, urban mobility devices, and delivery robots come to fruition. We need dedicated space for devices that are faster than a pedestrian but slower than a car By rethinking the purpose of streets, U.S. municipalities are delivering improved safety, better economic performance, new transportation choices and a higher quality of life. They are doing so with new techniques that realign and reassign space on streets using paint and simple physical objects that can be cheaply purchased and quickly installed. Using these rapid implementation methods over the last several years, cities are creating heavily used bike networks, popular new public spaces and demonstrably safer streets for walking, biking, and driving. For organizations as big and complicated as local governments, creating a new process or procedure is difficult. But if you do it right, it can be revolutionary.

A QUICK-BUILD STREET PROJECT IS: 

Led by a city government or other public agency.

Installed roughly within a year of the start of planning.

Planned with the expectation that it may undergo change after installation.

Built using materials that allow such changes.

Quick-build projects are reversible, adjustable traffic safety improvements that can be installed relatively quickly. Unlike major capital projects that may take years to plan, design, bid and construct, quick-build projects are buildable within weeks and months and are intended to be evaluated and reviewed within the initial 24 months of construction. Typical quick-build type improvements include:

  • Paint, traffic delineators, and street signs
  • Parking and loading adjustments
  • Traffic signal timing
  • Transit boarding islands


We are a civil engineering firm that has been innovating in this space for the last few years. We have developed the exact model to deliver these types of projects. We look forward to bringing these national best practices to Austin to accelerate their program.

Describe who will use your solution (1,000 characters)

We need to design for all ages and abilities. Our streets need to be comfortable for kids, seniors, skateboarders, scooter riders, women, minorities...everyone. By design for a blind person in a wheelchair, we make our sidewalks equitable. By designing to connect marginalized neighborhoods to stable/comfortable transportation we design for everyone. When we design for scooter lanes that are wide enough for trailers and plan to go at scooter speeds, we design for the future. Intersection design is key, it is where we interact, it s where we make eye contact, it is where we cross. my rapidly implementing these facilities we create a culture of respect. These facilities are more comfortable. Building bicycle infrastructure that is for All ages and abilities is an essential strategy for cities seeking to improve traffic safety, reduce congestion, improve air quality and public health, provide better and more equitable access to jobs and opportunities, and bolster local economies.

Describe your solution's stage of development

  • Initial Design - you are still exploring the idea and have not tested it with users
  • Prototype - you have built a prototype and tested it with potential users
  • Pilot - you have implemented your solution in a real-world scenario
  • Ready to Scale - you have completed and expanded your pilot and are seeing adoption of your solution by your intended user
  • Fully Scaled - you have already scaled your solution and are exploring new use cases

Insights from previous testing (500 characters)

We built 16 miles of bikeways in DT San Jose. We have seen an increase in cycling of 50% in one year in downtown and 30% in the greater San Jose Area. This is not including scooters that have taken over in our downtown. It has encouraged more businesses to come to downtown and more development. The city is safer to cross for pedestrians and the handicapped. The busses have become more efficient with the bus boarding island. The city has allocated space for future technologies and art.

Tell us about your team or organization (500 characters)

We are a team of Civil Engineers, Transportation professionals, and Urban Planners. We are industry experts in protected bike lanes and protected intersections. We have implemented more protected intersections in California than anyone else. We have also installed them quickly by avoiding major civil, environmental, and drainage impacts. We build intersections within months with paint, posts, and rubber curbs. This type of prototyping with data analysis helps interact with the future of streets.

Size of your team or organization

  • 2-10

Team or Organization URL

Crossroadlab.com

Funding Request

  • $50,000

Rough budget (500 characters)

$15,000 in Planning, Design, and Coordination $35,000 in Construction Materials and Labor

Describe how you would pilot your idea (1000 characters)

Cities to prototype roads. our curb and gutter haven't changed for the last 70 years. Our design vehicles haven't changed much either. We now have connected vehicles, electric scooters, the elderly of mobility scooters, delivery robots, and more. Designing protected bike lanes put everyone in an organized manner that prioritizes safety over efficiency. The city would understand the materials, we would develop standard details, the city crew would adopt them into their practice. we would implement a few locations and let the usage follow. protected intersections are intuitive to when built right and by testing it in the public ROW, it will show the politicians and engineers that change is possible. We have done this with in-field community meetings to develop the design and implement it with Community Based Organization. We will target marginalized and neglected communities, work with the community through construction and monitor the results. This is on-the-ground outreach.

Describe how you would measure the success of your pilot (1000 characters)

Before and After studies will be conducted. Monitoring can be done with temporary bicycle counters and other temporary equipment. Finding will be a combination of volume data and interception outreach. We will be looking to understand the “comfort” of the facilities for all users. When these studies were conducted in San Jose we found a 50% increase in cycling not including scooters. Now that scooters are part of the system, we can utilize that data and other data sources to show how the culture has changed. Eco-counter and other products are familiar to Austin. We can use these units to temporarily monitor the project.

Sustainability Plan (500 characters)

This will be a new standard practice and we will see people asking for more. It is green, be made of recycled materials, it can be implemented with inclusivity and target marginalized communities. Electric scooters and bikes are a greener form of transport and a protected bike lane can move more people can a vehicle lane can. Our experience is in Highway design and sustainable transport. We have been heavily involved in the transition of the Bay Area to a Carbon Nuetral metropolis.

Social Media

Crossroadlab.com https://www.linkedin.com/in/vignesh-swaminathan-b171207a

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Photo of Franklin Brown
Team

Hi Vignesh,
My team and I would like to extend an open invitation to collaborate with you in the Ford 2019 City:One Challenge. Our Austin Green Health Zones project was designed to be an inclusive plan, and if we become the finalist in the competition, we would like to consider using your work as one of our included partnerships. Please take a moment to read our proposal and explore the various ways in which we maybe able to work together. We've already had a chance to look over your project and we think it would be a perfect fit to include in our plan, as our project was thought through and written to allow room for additional innovative projects just like yours. We're more than certain that you'll agree that it's a win-win situation for you and your team. Please feel free to contact us at anytime. We look forward to exchanging ideas and conversing with you soon. Thank you in advance for your time and best of luck in the challenge!

-Franklin Brown | Urban UAV Systems & Consulting, Inc.

https://challenges.cityoftomorrow.com/austin/activity?type=all&sort=popular

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