Twelve students attending partner universities of the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) are receiving Eisenhower Fellowships presented by the U.S. Department of Transportation at this year's annual meeting of the Transportation Research Board (TRB). Meet the NITC Eisenhower Fellows:

Cameron Bennett, Portland State University

Cameron is a second-year master’s student in transportation engineering at PSU. His work as a graduate research assistant focuses on promoting and facilitating the uptake of active transportation modes. He serves as president of the PSU ITE-STEP (Students in Transportation Engineering and Planning) student group. He received Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships presented by the U.S. Department of Transportation at the Transportation Research Board 2022 and 2023 annual meetings. He is also the... Read more

Christian Galiza is a senior in civil engineering. He is the Vice President of Communications for Portland State University's Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) student chapter, Students in Transportation Engineering & Planning (ITE-STEP), and also works as a structural engineering intern for Eclipse Engineering. He is the recipient of an ITE Regional Travel Scholarship to attend the 2022 ITE Western District Annual Meeting in Palm Springs, CA. He is also a 2022/23 National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) scholar. Christian enjoys transportation because it's fascinating to think about the relationship between building sustainable infrastructure and transportation planning and its impact on how people move every day.

Connect with Christian on LinkedIn.


Tell us about yourself?

I am originally from the beautiful island of Oahu, Hawaii, and I have been working through the B.S. Civil Engineering program at Portland State University. My transportation interests include Complete Streets, safety, and issues involving transportation equity. In January 2023, I’m excited to embark on an engineering internship with the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) in their Traffic Operations section...

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The 102nd annual meeting of the Transportation Research Board (TRB) will be held January 8–12, 2023 in Washington, D.C. Supported by funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation, research from the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) will be featured at this annual gathering. The spotlight theme for the 2023 meeting is Rejuvenation Out of Disruption: Envisioning a Transportation System for a Dynamic Future.

Below are a few highlights of research being presented by transportation experts from our participating NITC-funded campuses: Portland State University (PSU), University of Oregon (UO), University of Utah (UU), University of Arizona (UA), and University of Texas at Arlington (UTA). Check out our full NITC guide for all of the sessions:

VIEW THE ONLINE GUIDE TO NITC AT TRB 2023

*Due to the evolving status of speaker attendance and TRB programming for next week, please check your TRB schedule for the most current information in the event of changes.*

NITC Research Highlights at TRB 2023

MULTI-UNIVERSITY PROJECTS

Transportation Academies as Catalysts for Civic Engagement in Transportation Decision-making
Mon, Jan 9 (1:30 PM- 5:30 PM)...
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A new transportation comic, "Moving From Cars To People (PDF)," offers a succinct and fun introduction to a complicated topic: namely, how the built environment in the United States came to be designed for cars and what we can do about it.

Want a physical copy? Here are a few ways to get one:

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The National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) is proud to introduce our newest Dissertation Fellow, Nicholas Puczkowskyj of Portland State University, who was awarded $15,000 for his doctoral research project: Expanding Transmobilities: An Art-Informed Methodology For Genderdiverse Travel Behavior.

"My dissertation focuses on understanding how genderdiverse individuals' gender identity influences their travel behavior and travel decisions. I use an art-based methodology by operationalizing collage and mental maps to delicately capture these data. I believe this work will support mobility justice research and the greater social justice movement by further solidifying the field of transmobilities. Additionally, this research seeks to push the boundaries of transportation research by illustrating the power of art as a modality for travel behavior research," Puczkowskyj said.

There is a significant gendered travel behavior research gap in the transportation literature. A plethora of transportation literature identifying and contrasting cisgender disparities exists, but more inclusive approaches to genderdiverse identities remain scarce. The burgeoning field of transmobilities investigates transgender mobility and evolved from the nexus of mobility justice and gender studies by studying transgender experiences on public transit.

Nick's dissertation expands...

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Navigating an unfamiliar place is uniquely challenging for people with disabilities. People with blindness, deafblindness, visual impairment or low vision, as well as those who use wheelchairs, can travel more independently in urban areas with the aid of effective wayfinding technology. A new report from the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) explores how to leverage low-cost methods to enable people to more easily move through public, urban indoor and outdoor spaces.

The study, led by Martin Swobodzinski and Amy Parker of Portland State University, used focus groups, two case studies, and an in-person structured wayfinding experience on the PSU campus to find the most helpful ways of getting around. Tactile maps were found to be a very useful resource, with an accessible mobile app also showing promise as an orientation and mobility aid.

The researcher will share more details about this project in a free webinar on December 15: Individual Wayfinding in the Context of Visual Impairment, Blindness, and Deafblindness.

WHY IS THIS RESEARCH IMPORTANT?

Environments and...

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Researchers Ivis Garcia, Sadika Maheruma Khan, and Kevin Fagundo-Ojeda of the University of Utah with Miriam Abelson and Nicholas Puczkowskyj of Portland State University have published a new article in the November 2022 issue of Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment.

Scholarship on gendered mobilities has shown that women experience transit differently than men do, particularly regarding personal safety. The article, "Harassment of low-income women on transit: A photovoice project in Oregon and Utah," makes a unique contribution to this body of literature because it shows that women feel targeted also based on their racial or ethnic identity and not only their gender. The article discusses women’s actions every day to increase their sense of safety.

Research has shown that low-income women who are...

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Researchers Jennifer Dill, Jiahui Ma, Nathan McNeil, Joseph Broach and John MacArthur of Portland State University have published a new article in the November 2022 issue of Transportation Part D: Transport and Environment. The open-access article, "Factors influencing bike share among underserved populations: Evidence from three U.S. cities," examines bike share use and interest among lower-income residents and people of color in New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia.

There is evidence that lower-income and people of color (POC) in the U.S. do not use bike share as much as higher-income and white people. Using data from residents living near bike share stations in New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia, the paper examines reasons for these disparities. Researchers looked at many factors that might explain bike share use and interest in lower-income, racially diverse, traditionally underserved neighborhoods. They focused on residents who live near bike share stations, so that proximity would not be a barrier.

A few key findings:

  1. People who are not members, but are interested in using bike share, including POC, are motivated to use bike share for fun, recreation, and social reasons (as opposed to utility).
  2. Knowledge of bike share and receiving information from interactive sources (for example,...
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When the COVID-19 pandemic first swept across North America and led to emergency shutdowns during the spring of 2020, the way people acquired food and household necessities was dramatically impacted. As stay-at-home orders minimized personal travel, transit services were reduced and many stores and restaurants either closed or modified their operations. 

Some of the gaps were filled by online retailers and delivery services. However, access to goods and services varied substantially depending on people's age, income level, and ability.

A new multi-university study funded by the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC), the U.S. DOT-funded university transportation headquartered at Portland State University, and the National Science Foundation (NSF) captured how households responded as local, state, and federal governments imposed and lifted restrictions, brick-and-mortar establishments closed and reopened, and e-commerce and delivery services adjusted to the changing conditions.

The findings of this research are critical for emergency planning, but also for understanding the ever-changing mechanisms used to access retail and service opportunities (whether in person or online). The research identifies opportunities for future interventions to remedy barriers to accessing food, which will...

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Travel time reliability – or the consistency and dependability of travel times from day to day, and at different times of day – is a key metric that significantly affects people’s travel behavior. Since businesses rely heavily on transportation systems, an unreliable transportation network can also impact the economic competitiveness of urban areas. As such, reliable travel times are important for transportation agencies to promote economic stability within a community. Having accurate methods to evaluate reliability is important for both transportation practitioners and researchers.

A new report from Portland State University offers an improved method for determining the confidence interval of travel time reliability metrics. Researchers Avinash Unnikrishnan, Subhash Kochar and Miguel Figliozzi of PSU’s Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science used a highway corridor in Portland, Oregon as a case study to evaluate their method, and found that it compared favorably with other methods of evaluating the confidence interval of travel time reliability metrics.

"Traffic engineers can apply this method to come up with a range of estimates for the unknown true travel time reliability metric. The travel time reliability metrics calculated by traffic engineers and transportation planners will have variability due to factors such as road...

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