<p> Move over XBox; step aside Playstation. The height of game-playing action is free and it's online. The <a href="http://www.its.umn.edu/trafficcontrolgame/game/">new game in town</a> is University of Minnesota, Intelligent Transportation Systems Institute's "<em>Gridlock Buster</em>". Test your mettle on the increasing levels of difficulty in processing vehicular traffic through a network of intersections.
Move over XBox; step aside Playstation. The height of game-playing action is free and it's online. The new game in town is University of Minnesota, Intelligent Transportation Systems Institute's "Gridlock Buster". Test your mettle on the increasing levels of difficulty in processing vehicular traffic through a network of intersections. As you begin at the bottom rungs of a city traffic department, you're encouraged and coached by a senior traffic group member to take on more challenging conditions as you climb the bureaucratic ladder. If on your watch honking cars max out the so-called frustration meter, you lose your tenure in the city's traffic group and it's back to the mailroom for you. Manage the downtown grid's peak traffic successfully and, eh, well, I didn't exactly get that far. As a matter of fact, my home's proverbial Mayor (that's my wife) was not happy with all the horn honking resulting from my mediocre efforts, and I was forced to submit my resignation (I did try to appeal to her that it should be expected for communities to have a negative initial reaction to changes in signal timings, but she wasn't willing to put up with the grumblings). But look, every public meeting I attend at least one person insists I don't understand their traffic as well as they do (which is usually true), so why shouldn't it be true in Gridlock Buster's fictional Metro too?
Note the mute is on since The Mayor insisted I get a handle on the racket!
Regardless, this game is sure to pique the traffic engineering geek in you and offers a chance at aspiring to the dubious rank of the new Gridlock Demagogue. At the very least, you may come to realize via this game that the modern solution to solving congestion hasn't much to do with answering old-school gridlock gripes. Instead, I have to agree with Sarah Goodyear in her Streetsblog post today that, despite the subtle implications here that there's more to solving congestion than merely futzing with signals, all the modern-day progressive solutions to solving urban congestion are regrettably absent from Gridlock Buster. I was hoping to get the chance to insert a bike lane, assign a Bus Rapid Transit corridor, prescribe a road diet, or maybe even introduce a roundabout. And what about the advanced levels including pedestrian crossings? Search the web as I might, I just couldn't find any of the following cheat codes: BKLANE, BRT, TRFFCLMNG, RNDABT, MXDUSE, PEDPRORTY. Despite these shortcomings, Gridlock Buster is a fun diversion and a great way to introduce younger engineers to the basics of network traffic management. Perhaps Version 2.0 of UMITSI's Gridlock Buster will include transportation demand measures as "assessment options" after each level. In the meantime, try to keep your frustration meter level down low this weekend, and fulfill your lifelong dream at being a traffic engineer!
Inclusive Prosperity: No Displacement Necessary
Recent analysis identifies nearly 200 U.S. neighborhoods that have achieved the highly-sought-after goal of increasing the prosperity of residents without displacing the existing community.
Making Healthy Places
The editors of the book "Making Healthy Places," recently published in a second edition by Island Press, discuss the intersections of public health and planning, including key concepts such as green gentrification, health impact assessments, and AI.
Chicago ADUs Concentrated in More Affluent Neighborhoods
An analysis of city-issued permits shows that homeowners in gentrified wards are building accessory dwelling units at much higher rates than those in less well-off communities.
Tempe’s Car-Free Developers Headed to Atlanta
Culdesac, developer of a massive no-parking multi-family development in Arizona, is headed to Georgia.
Is it a Rowhouse, or a Rowhome?
Philadelphia has long been acknowledged as the capital of rowhouses in the United States. It’s becoming more common for those rowhouses to be referred to as rowhomes.
Maps for Proposed San Francisco Bay Tunnel Revealed
Planners presented two options for new tunnels that would help connect more parts of the Northern California megaregion to San Francisco and Oakland.
HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research
Smart City Expo World Congress
Daniel R. Mandelker
City of Charleston
City of Crystal River
Sun City Center Community Association, Inc
This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.