New Survey: Carless Options in San Francisco and Boston
A bike-shaped bike rack outside a Boston "T" subway line. Photo by straightedge217.

How about hitching your ride to this bike-shaped bike rack outside this Boston "T" subway? Photo by straightedge217.

Latitude, a Boston-based research consultancy, is asking interested volunteers to forgo using their cars for a week in order to investigate how cities, transportation providers and technology encourages the use of alternative transport (i.e. biking, walking, ridesharing) in San Francisco and Boston. Participants must be regular car users to participate in the study. The study also aims to find ways to improve the design of transportation so  various modes work together as a single system, offering real value to users. The results of the study will be shared openly.

Latitude’s mission is to push its vision of a “more informed, more actionable, and more connected world, with an eye toward the greater good.” The organization has an ongoing series of research studies “to generate knowledge and applied opportunities for the connected world.”  The studies explore everyday experiences with a focus on commerce, communication, and civic life by using “collectivity creativity” to generate data.  

The key questions this particular study seeks to address:

  • What are the options for sustainable transportation and how can cities encourage their use?
  • How can the web, mobile, real-time, and location-aware technologies improve the transit experience?
  • How can different transportation modes function together to create a more integrated and more intelligent transportation system?

The study period is November 1-7, 2010. Find out more information here.

Latitude is surveying transit users in Boston because MassDOT is emphasizing mobile technologies to improve user experiences of bus, subway and commuter rail lines, as well as trying to improve its bike infrastructure through an in-the-works bike share program. And the survey is being conducted in San Francisco because the city aims to create an integrated housing-transit center by creating a “Grand Central Station of the West” that links 11 different transit systems. Let us know if you end up signing up!

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