Completed 2018 Research Project

The influence of the built environment on crash risk in lower-income and higher-income communities

Principal Investigator
Yanmei Li
Florida Atlantic University
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Eric Dumbaugh
Florida Atlantic University
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Final Report

Project Slide Deck

Research Brief


While previous research has consistently identified income as a significant factor in understanding community-level crash risk, the results of this study suggest that income has a far more complex relationship to crash incidence than has been previously supposed. The first and perhaps most notable finding is that while urban arterials are a risk factor for all areas, their negative effect on safety is profoundly greater in lower-income environments. For higher income communities, each additional mile of urban arterial is associated with a 9% increase in total and KAB crashes, though it did not prove to have a statistically meaningful relationship with pedestrian crashes. For lower-income communities, each mile of urban arterials is associated with a nearly 30% increase in total and KAB crashes, and a 19% increase in pedestrian crashes. For Orlando/Orange County, which has been identified by Smart Growth America (2019) as being the most dangerous region for pedestrians in the United States, these findings strongly suggest that the region needs to pay explicit attention to the effects of arterial design in lower-income communities.

Project Details

Project Type: Research
Project Status: Completed
Start Date: 4-1-2018
End Date: 1-31-2021
Contract Year: Year 2
Total Funding from CSCRS: $68,314