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Access in Appalachia

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During the National Regional Transportation Conference (June 2019, Columbus, OH), Naomi Stein discussed EDR Group's work with the Appalachian Regional Commission to develop a protocol for measuring rural accessibility.

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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Access in Appalachia

  1. 1. Access in Appalachia Naomi Stein, EDR Group NADO – National RegionalTransportation Conference 2019
  2. 2. Thank you to... Ryan Brumfield and the entire staff at the Appalachian Regional Commission for sponsoring this research The research team on this project – Mark Sieber, GlenWeisbrod, Adam Blair, and Ralph Straumman Acknowledgments 2© 2018
  3. 3. 1. What is accessibility? 2. Access in Appalachia What aspects matter most for economic development? How to be user and needs oriented? How to account for multimodality, even in a rural context? 3. Where do we go from here? This research How can you get started? Agenda 3© 2018
  4. 4. “the potential of opportunities for interaction.” - Hansen (1959) “people’s overall ability to reach services & activities” - Litman (2017) “[a] state in which the functional capacities of a person and the functional demands of an environment are matched in such a way that an activity can be completed” - Harness (2014) What is Accessibility? 4© 2018 Do transportation and land development conditions meet the needs of people and businesses, enabling full and equitable participation in the economy and society? ?
  5. 5. The Three Dimensions of Any Accessibility Definition 5© 2018 User Group • Access for whom? Attractions/ Destinations • Access to what? Network Availability and Performance • Can you get there? • How easy / hard is it? For everyone or special attention paid to specific subgroups? Which destinations are most critical? Consider difference by mode? How far is too far / how close is close enough?
  6. 6. Common Measurement Approaches 6© 2018 Contour include all activity reachable within a given threshold Potential/Gravity Activities located further away weighted less than those close Nearest Destination/ Sufficiency Access to nearest destination or Y/N if nearest destination is within a threshold 
  7. 7. Access in Appalachia – Uses & Audiences 7© 2018 Area Description Audience Prioritization • Present accessibility deficits in rural Appalachia • Allow for comparisons (within Region, within ARC states, to non-ARC rural) State DOTs Planning / Programming • Better align economic priorities and transportation strategies and concepts State DOTs, MPOs, … Sensitization • Raise awareness for accessibility deficits  beyond access to jobs  beyond car mode • Raise awareness for the relation between accessibility and economic outcomes State DOTs, Other state agencies, Local/regional agencies, LDDs Communica- tion • Demonstrate where transportation is constraining access Service providers, Residents, Businesses
  8. 8. Step 1: Kinds of access from literature research Access and Economic Development – What Matters Most? 8© 2018 Destination Network / Modes Freight Car Available Non- Vehicular Trucks Rail Car Transit Para- Transit Active Modes Businesses markets labor supply chain delivery consumers rail facility port airport People work job retail food education primary education high school college health care primary care trauma center addiction treatment center dental care mental health recreation tourist destination People & Businesses internet broadband Potentially relevant kind of access No Car Available social services Intermodal connectivity User Group
  9. 9. Step 2: Needs assessment by interviewees On-the-ground knowledge from interviewees at USDOT, State DOTs, and Local Development Districts and MPOs. Access and Economic Development – What Matters Most? 9© 2018 User Group Destination Interviewees Businesses markets labor 2 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 supply chain 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 delivery consumers 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 rail facility 1 1 1 port 1 1 airport 1 1 People work job 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 1 retail food 1 2 1 education primary education 2 1 1 high school 2 1 1 college 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 health care primary care 2 1 1 2 2 2 1 1 trauma center 2 1 1 2 addiction treatment center 2 1 1 dental care mental health recreation tourist destination 1 1 0 2 1 1 People & Businesses internet broadband 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 2 1 Others: Govern- ment services Town centers with services/ amenit. 0 not mentioned / not important 1 important 2 very important intermodal connectivity social services
  10. 10. Step 3: Defining key types of access Access and Economic Development – What Matters Most? 10© 2018 Access to … Labor Supply chain Delivery Consumers Rail facility Port Airport Education College Trauma center Addiction treatment center Town centers Tourist destination B&P Broadband Businesses Intermodal connectivity Job Health care Primary care People
  11. 11. • Developing a framework in relation to needs oFocus on what matters most, while still being multidimensional oRecognize that access needs vary by user group Access in Appalachia 11© 2018 Complementary metrics (for different population groups or other specific destination groups) Core set of metrics key to economic development Examples: • Access to jobs for population age 18-65 • Access to level 1/2 trauma center for all population Examples: • Access to jobs for all population • Access to level 1/2 trauma center for population age 65 and older
  12. 12. Access in Appalachia: Core Access for Business 12© 2018 Business Specification Access to … Destination specification All Industries Labor Associate's or higher Manufacturing Supply chain Employment All Industries Trade & Warehousing Delivery Consumers Population Manufacturing and Trade Warehousing Intermodal connectivity Rail facility All Freight Rail Manufacturing and Trade Warehousing Port Coastal Port All Industries Airport All Airports User Group: For whom does it matter most? Specifying which destination type is most important
  13. 13. Access in Appalachia: Core Access for People 13© 2018 User Group: For whom does it matter most? Specifying which destination type is most important Population Specification Access to … Destination specification Age 18-65 Job Employment Age 18-24 Education College All Colleges (2yr, 4 yr) All People Health care Primary care General Practice All People Trauma center All Levels All People Addiction treatment center All Substance Abuse All People Town centers <<TBD>> All People Tourist destination National and State Designated Complementary: Evaluate access for those in poverty
  14. 14. Broadband access can be an enabler, bridging gaps where physical access is poor Consider broadband access as an additional dimension rather than as a separate kind of access Access in Appalachia: Internet Connectivity 14© 2018 Broadband Access function as a fall-back option Poor access to jobs Poor access to health care Poor access to education Telework Telehealth Teleeducation Access to … Sufficient Speed/Technology Mobile Broadband (i.e. Cell Phones) LTE Fixed Broadband (i.e. at home) ≥ 25/3 Mbps download/upload
  15. 15. 1. Car accessibility 2. Distribution of carless and car-poor households by geographic unit 3. Non-car accessibility o Transit where available** o Walking Access in Appalachia: Accounting for Multimodal Needs 15© 2018 **Transit data availability is a remaining core challenge that ARC and others are working to address (we encourage everyone to publish GTFS data!)
  16. 16. • Access in Appalachia –We’re wrapping up Phase 1, to define what’s worthwhile and how you would get there • Vision for the end product at the end of Phase 2: What’s Next? 16© 2018 Selection of Metric (Example) Maps, Lists, Tables User Group People Sub Group Population age 18-65 Mode Car Access Category Health Care Destination Level 1/2 Trauma Center Geography State West Virginia County A 20,500 County B 16,300 County C 5,800 County D 2,300
  17. 17. •We want to hear from you! How could this kind of data could support your work? Naomi Stein nstein@edrgroup.com •Impatient to get started now? • Have a travel model? – you already have the tools you need to calculate accessibility • Sketch tools like AASHTO’s EconWorks can help you calculate changes in labor market and supply chain accessibility • Look to your peers – I am happy to share information on the state of practice (Task 1 of this effort) • Other Accessibility Projects - Access Across America (some public data – multimodal access to jobs) • ProprietaryTools What’s Next? 17© 2018
  18. 18. 18© 2018 Thank you!

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