Impact of Pedestrian Malls on Transportation Activities

Report No: 79-R59

Published in 1979

About the report:

Pedestrian malls - streets that have been dedicated to pedestrian use only - are a popular urban renewal tactic for stimulating economic growth in deteriorating central business districts by attracting commercial retail business. Because of benefits they bring to the downtown road system, pedestrian malls have been included as a means of route diversion in many lists of transportation system management tactics. Because there has been little documentation of the effects of pedestrian malls on transportation activities, the study reported here was undertaken. Officials of selected cities in other states, all of which have pedestrian malls, and merchants and shoppers on three malls in Virginia were surveyed to measure changes resulting from the construction of malls and identify specific problems relating to transportation in the areas of the malls. It was found that the construction of pedestrian malls had provided an impetus for improvements to the downtown transportation system. Problems with goods delivery were found to have increased, but most merchants had been able to adjust delivery operations to alleviate the problems. It was believed that access for users of the mall could be improved, but the methodology utilized in the study was unable to quantify the degree to which methods of improvement had been effective.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


Other Authors

William E. Oliver, R. N. Robertson

Last updated: January 26, 2024

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