Boats and Bottlenecks: Improving Mobility in Venice

YEAR: 2013 | TERM: B




Kelsey Marie Brofford; Riley David Larkins; Luis Jose Pernia-Rovayo; Alexandra Elizabeth Shea


Frederick L. Hart

Our project focused on the topics of public transportation, pedestrian infrastructure, and pedestrian congestion. As Venice has a very unique transportation infrastructure as a whole, our group adapted and re-purposed methods and tools that were developed for more conventional applications. The public transportation system, while restricted to waterways, has many elements in common with other cities’ metropolitan bus routes. To help unfamiliar users learn the ins and outs of the system, we adapted an informative mobile application developed by the Santa Fe project center for use in Venice. Unlike public transportation, the pedestrian infrastructure in Venice is truly unique. With no cars or bicycles permitted in the historic city, the only way to move is by foot. As part of our project we studied various facets of the pedestrian network, such as dead ends and plateatici, and compiled a database of Venice’s streets’ histories. With unique infrastructure comes unique difficulties. Congestion at bottlenecks is a common occurrence, which the bulk of our project worked to quantify. By adapting an industry standard approach to measuring congestion, we were able to collect and analyze data at bottlenecks, as well as predict future trends based on demographic reports.