Community Livability

Helping to Create Attractive, Safe, Cohesive Communities


TDM Encyclopedia

Victoria Transport Policy Institute


Updated 18 July 2017

This chapter describes the concept of livability and ways that TDM strategies impact it. Livability refers to the environmental and social quality of an area as perceived by residents, employees, customers and visitors. Livability is affected by a community’s public safety, environmental quality, community cohesion, friendliness, aesthetics, accessibility, pride and opportunity. Many TDM strategies can help achieve livability objectives.




Community Livability refers to the environmental and social quality of an area as perceived by residents, employees, customers and visitors. This includes safety and health (traffic safety, personal security, public health), local environmental conditions (cleanliness, noise, dust, air quality, water quality), the quality of social interactions (neighborliness, fairness, respect, community identity and pride), opportunities for recreation and entertainment, aesthetics, and existence of unique cultural and environmental resources (e.g., historic structures, mature trees, traditional architectural styles) (Shaheen, et al. 2016; Steuteville 2016).


Figure 1          Livability and Other Sustainability Issues

Livability Issues

Other Sustainability Issues

Efficient local mobility 

Local  infrastructure cost efficiency

Local economic development

Social equity


Transportation safety and security

Public health

Local air, noise and water pollution exposure

Community cohesion

Local openspace preservation

Local cultural preservation

Efficient global mobility

Global economic development

Global air, noise and water pollution impacts

National infrastructure efficiency

Resource depletion

Global  biodiversity risks

Global cultural preservation

Livability refers to the subset of sustainability issues that directly affect community residents.



Community livability directly benefits people who live in, work in or visit an area, increases property values and business activity, and it can improve public health and safety. Conversely, improving community livability can help achieve transport planning objectives such as reduced automobile travel, increased use of other modes, and more compact land use development (Holian and Kahn 2012). Livability is largely affected by conditions in the public realm, places where people naturally interact with each other and their community, including streets, parks, transportation terminals and other public facilities, and so is affected by public policy and planning decisions.



Transportation Impacts on Livability

Transportation decisions can have major impacts on community livability. Streetscapes that are attractive, safe and suitable for a variety of transportation modes (particularly walking) are a key factor in community livability. Commute travel time and congestion tend to reduce life satisfaction (Choi, Coughlin and D’Ambrosio 2013). Traffic safety, traffic noise and local air pollution, Affordability, impervious surface coverage (i.e., the portion of land devoted to roads and parking), preservation of environmental and cultural structures, and opportunities for recreation are all livability factors often affected by transportation policies and practices.


Transportation decisions can also affect social interactions and community cohesion (Forkenbrock and Weisbrod 2001). Pedestrian-friendly streets create opportunities for people to meet and interact, helping to create community networks. A classic study by Appleyard (1981) and Hart (2008) found that residents of higher traffic volume streets are less likely to know their neighbors, and show less concern over their local environment than residents of streets with lower traffic volumes and speeds.


Traditional transportation planning tends to emphasize vehicle mobility improvements over other community livability objectives. Streets were designed primarily to maximize traffic flow, and buildings were designed to maximize parking convenience. Far greater resources were devoted to automobile facilities (road and parking) than for nonmotorized modes. Funding was available to landscape freeways, but not neighborhood streets. Important environmental and social features, and sometimes whole communities, were destroyed during highway construction. There is now increasing appreciation of the importance of community livability objectives. Planners realize that roads often play multiple roles as both travel corridors and places for community interaction. Many communities now favor roadway improvements that reduce traffic speeds and limit traffic volumes for the sake of livability.


Transportation Demand Management can help achieve many community Livability objectives, including improved Walking and Cycling conditions; Basic Access, improved Accessibility and transportation affordability; increased Security, Health and Safety; Emission Reductions; improved opportunities for community interaction and recreation; and preservation of greenspace and cultural artifacts. Many of the Active Community Environment factors advocated by the U.S. Center for Disease Control, such more walkable communities and incentives for reduced automobile travel, are supported by TDM (Killingsworth and Lamming 2001).



Strategies For Improving Community Livability

The following TDM strategies tend to be particularly effective at achieving Livability objectives.


Land Use Management Strategies

Land use management strategies such as New Urbanism and Smart Growth are the basis for creating more Accessibility communities with attractive, walkable neighborhoods and a variety of Transportation Choices. Location-Efficient Mortgages can make urban infill development more affordable and financially attractive, leading to mixed-use and mixed-income communities. Land use planning is often an opportunity for communities to establish livability objectives and implement programs to achieve these objectives (Land Use Evaluation).


Nonmotorized Transportation Improvements

Pedestrian Improvements and Bicycle Improvements can help create attractive, safe and vibrant streets and improve transportation choice. Nonmotorized Transportation Encouragement programs can help overcome specific barriers to cycling and walking and increase the number of people using these modes.


Complete Streets Policies

Complete Streets refers to roadway design and operating practices intended to safely accommodate diverse users and activities including pedestrians, cyclists, motorists, public transport users, people with disabilities, plus adjacent businesses and residents. Complete Streets policies are a practical ways to improve Transportation Options and Safety.


Traffic Calming

Traffic Calming includes a variety of roadway design features that reduce vehicle traffic speeds and volumes. This can reduce traffic Speed, noise and air pollution, and improve safety, particularly for residents. It is often implemented in conjunction with other roadway environmental improvements such as landscaping and Road Space Reallocation.


Car-Free Planning and Vehicle Restrictions

Comprehensive Car-free Planning and Vehicle Restrictions that support other TDM strategies (nonmotorized transport, transit, efficient land use, etc.) can significantly improve livability by reducing vehicle traffic and improving nonmotorized accessibility. Campus Transportation Management can be a way to create and improve Car-Free areas in campus areas.



Parking Management

Parking Management can be an important way to support community livability. It can create more attractive landscapes, improve accessibility and walkability, preserve greenspace and increase housing affordability.


Universal Design

Universal Design refers to facility designs that accommodate the widest range of potential users, including people with disabilities and other special needs. Universal Design supports accessibility, community cohesion and equity objectives.


Tourist Transportation Management

Livability factors, such as local environmental quality, walkability and preservation of important artifacts, can be particularly important in resort communities. Tourist Transportation Management can help preserve the attributes that attract visitors to a recreational area, improve visitors’ transportation choices, and mitigate problems for residents and employees, such as seasonal traffic congestion and parking problems.


Special Event Transportation Management

Special Event Transportation Management involves encouraging the use of alternative modes to events such as fairs, concerts and games. This can make such events more enjoyable and affordable, and mitigate problems such as traffic congestion.


School Trip Management

School Trip Management encourages parents, students and staff to reduce automobile trips and use alternative modes for travel to and from schools. This can support community livability objectives including transportation choice, accessibility, walkability, affordability, community interaction and reduced traffic on local streets. It can be a catalyst for more efficient land use, Nonmotorized Transportation Planning, and other strategies that support livability objectives.


Address Security Concerns

Efforts to Address Security Concerns can improve personal safety, which directly increases community livability and supports other objectives such as transportation choice, community interaction and reduced automobile traffic. Increasing Transportation System Resilience can improve security for individuals and communities.


Transit Improvements

Transit service quality and affordability are important for many livability objectives, including transportation choice, affordability and reduced automobile traffic. Transit Oriented Development can be a catalyst for more livable community development, such as urban neighborhood redevelopment. On the other hand, heavy diesel bus traffic can reduce streetscape environmental quality.


Designing for Community Cohesion

Community cohesion refers to the quantity and quality of interaction between people in a community. Human society is adaptable. Communities can function in all sorts of conditions, from rural villages to tower apartments. But some work better than others. Community cohesion improves with:

·         An attractive public realm – which encourages interaction.

·         Walkability – which brings people outside in areas where they can interact.

·         Mixed Land Use – which brings services close to people.


Transportation Services

Ridesharing (carpooling and vanpooling) Carsharing (automobile rental services intended to substitute for private vehicle ownership) and Taxi Service Improvements can help support livability objectives, including transportation choice, affordability and reduced automobile traffic.


Shuttle Services

Shuttle Services include a variety of transportation services that use small buses or vans to provide public mobility. This can help support livability objectives, including transportation choice and affordability, and is particularly appropriate for local, community-based mobility programs.



Telework involves the use of telecommunications to substitute for physical travel. It includes telecommuting, employees with mobile work (e.g., sales staff or field workers who rely heavily on telecommunications), and people who are self-employed and able to work from a home office due to efficient communications. This can help support livability objectives, including transportation choice, affordability and reduced automobile traffic.


Transportation Management Association

Transportation Management Associations are private, non-profit, member-controlled organizations that provide transportation services in a particular area, such as a business district, mall, medical center or industrial park. They can provide a framework for implementing a wide range of specific transportation strategies that achieve livability objectives in a specific district or neighborhood.


Institutional Reforms

Institutional reforms such as Least Cost Planning and more flexible road and parking design standards (FHWA, 1998) can help support community livability objectives.


Sustainable Transportation

Sustainable Transportation refers to transportation systems that respond to long-term and indirect economic, social and environmental objectives. Sustainable Transportation planning can provide a framework for implementing community livability improvements.



Evaluating Community Livability

Livability can be difficult evaluate. A variety of factors affect perceived environmental and social conditions, many of which are difficult to measure. People often have different preferences and priorities regarding community livability. Some factors, such as safety, aesthetics and friendliness, are important livability attributes in their own right, and as indicators of residents’ pride and consideration, which are also livability attributes, and so it may be difficult to determine which factors most important.


Despite these obstacles, livability can be evaluated using various indicators. The list below indicates general community livability objectives. This list can be modified and prioritized based on community surveys and public involvement techniques. The results can be used to create evaluation criteria and indicators for evaluating specific transportation and land use decisions (TDM Planning and Implementation).


Community Livability Objectives

·          Perception of public safety.

·          Attractive streetscapes and other public facilities.

·          Community character. A livable community tends to value having a unique identify that makes it special and instills a sense of community pride.

·          Friendliness and consideration. Positive personal interactions between people (including residents, employees and visitors) contribute to community livability.

·          Community cohesion. This refers to the degree of social networking in a community, including the degree to which residents cooperate and interact.

·          Walkability. Walking is a primary way that people travel, interact and experience their community.

·          Convenience, Accessibility and Transportation Choice, which increase people’s opportunities for employment, shopping and recreation, and support equity objectives.

·          Quiet, fresh air and cleanliness.

·          Quality of independent mobility for children, elders and people with special needs.

·          Recreation. Opportunities for fun, exercise and informal community interaction.

·          Affordability allows people of all income classes to be part of a community, and reduces stress and uncertainty on residents.

·          Equity. Respect, fairness and consideration of people with special needs are important for community livability.



The European Commission report Kids on the Move (EC, 2002) emphasizes the importance of designing urban communities that accommodate children’s physical exercise, independent mobility, and ability to explore their environment. It states, “all too often, our towns and cities seem to have been designed without any regard for children and young people. Public spaces and modes of transport – devised by healthy adults for, at best, other healthy adults – neglect the needs of children just as they neglect the needs of other ‘minorities’. This poses a threat to children’s independence and has a serious effect on their development and well-being.” The degree to which urban landscapes and transportation systems accommodate the needs of children and other people with special needs can be considered an indicator of community livability.


Fabish and Haas (2011) recommend the following livability program performance indicators:



Best Practices

·         Livability impacts should be treated seriously in transportation planning. Planning and investment practices should give traffic reduction and management strategies intended to achieve community livability objectives equal consideration as roadway and parking capacity expansion.


·         Comprehensive Transportation Planning should include attention to livability impacts, including effects on walking conditions, streetscape aesthetics, safety, affordability, recreation opportunities, community cohesion, and other special community attributes. Techniques should be developed and used that help stakeholders understand such impacts.


·         Public involvement should be used to develop community livability priorities and objectives for use in transportation and land use planning.


·         Planning and funding practices should be reformed to correct any biases that favor high-speed, highway travel over lower-speed, local travel.



Case Studies

Community Livability Travel Impacts (Holian and Kahn 2012)

Analysis of the 2009 National Household Travel Survey, supplemented with the various indicators of community livability show statistically significant relationships between downtown vibrancy (indicated by a downtown’s share of residents who are college graduates, the center city crime rate, the number of cultural and consumer-oriented establishments downtown, and the share of the metropolitan area’s jobs and population growth downtown), travel activity and pollution emissions. The analysis indicates that, all else being equal, residents of urban regions with more vibrant downtowns drive less, rely more on walking and public transport, consume less fuel and produce less vehicle emissions than in urban regions with less vibrant downtowns. Census data indicate that metropolitan areas with more vibrant downtowns experienced less sprawl between 2000 and 2010. This suggests that vibrancy influences land-use patterns, and land-use patterns in turn influence driving and public transit use.



Context Sensitive Design Workshops (

Context Sensitive Design (CSD) is a new approach to transportation planning that examines the role that streets and roads can play in enhancing communities and natural environments -- be they urban, suburban or rural, scenic or historical. Through a planning and design process that encourages practitioners to collaborate with communities, context sensitive design responds to local needs and values while accommodating the safe movement of motor vehicles. To take advantage of this new way of doing business, Project for Public Spaces ( has developed a series of one-day training sessions for transportation professionals offering practical help and technical guidance in applying context sensitive design.



Walkability, Livability And Community Cohesion (Rogers, et al. 2010)

Walkability can support community livability in several ways. It provides health-related benefits from physical exercise, basic mobility and accessibility, mental health and social benefits of reduced isolation, and affordability. It addition, it can provide social benefits by increasing social capital (also called community cohesion), which refers to an individual’s or group’s networks, personal connections, and involvement. Like economic and human capital, social capital is considered to have important values to both individuals and communities. Rogers, et al. (2010) use a case study approach to evaluate the impacts of walkable social capital. Residents living in neighborhoods of varying built form and thus varying levels of walkability in three communities in New Hampshire were surveyed about their levels of social capital and travel behaviors. The results indicate that levels of social capital are higher in more walkable neighborhoods.



Orenco Station (Steuteville 2009)

In a study comparing residents of Orenco Station, a new Transit-Oriented, New Urbanist community, with other Portland communities, Steuteville (2009) found that:

·         Fifty-eight percent of those surveyed report that people are friendlier in Orenco Station than in the places where they previously lived. In the less walkable Beaverton suburb nearby, only 47% said people are friendlier there, and 45% and 42% said this about the two Portland neighborhoods.

·         Fifty-nine percent of Orenco Station residents engage in group activities, compared to only 30 percent in the Beaverton suburb and 31% and 30% in the two Portland neighborhoods. The quality of group activities in Orenco Station appears to be higher than the other neighborhoods. Orenco Station residents most commonly cite group dinners, book clubs, and other informal neighborhood activities. The only common group activities in the other neighborhoods were neighborhood watch and homeowners association meetings. The study notes that in Orenco Station residents meet primarily for social reasons, while in the other neighborhoods they meet mostly to address safety and property issues.

·         Ten times more Orenco Station residents regularly walk to a store than do the inhabitants of the Beaverton suburb. Fifty percent of Orenco station residents report walking to a local store five or more times a week, compared to 5% in Beaverton. Only 7% of Orenco residents report never walking to the store, compared to 68% in Beaverton. This achievement likely contributes not only to environmental sustainability but to personal health in Orenco Station as well, the researchers note.

·         Sixty-seven percent of Orenco Station residents report using mass transit at least once a week, compared to 42% in the Beaverton suburb. Both communities are located within a quarter-mile of a light rail station. Orenco Station has pedestrian-friendly infrastructure, while the Beaverton suburb has few sidewalks.

·         Orenco Station has the highest occasional use of mass transit of any of the neighborhoods studied, with 51% of residents reporting that they use the light rail once or twice a week.

·         Orenco Station and the Beaverton suburb have a comparable number of regular light-rail users (16 percent). Twelve percent of Beaverton residents use mass transit 5 or more times a week, and 4 percent use it 3 to 4 times a week. Nine percent of Orenco Station residents use mass transit 5 or more times a week, and 7 percent use it 3 to 4 times a week.

·         Orenco Station reported by far the highest number (65%) of residents who use mass transit more since moving to the community. By contrast, 23% of the Beaverton suburb residents use mass transit more.

·         Of all the communities, Orenco Station had the lowest number of residents who reported never using mass transit (33%), but also the lowest number of people who reported using mass transit 5 or more times a week (9%).

·         Social activity rose substantially in Orenco Station in the 5-year period between the two surveys. In 2007, 59% reported participating in group activities, up from 40% in 2002. In 2007, 50% reported interacting with their neighbors in new ways — up from 8% in 2002.

·         Walking also rose substantially from 2002 to 2007 in Orenco Station, according to the study. In 2002, only 11% of Orenco Station residents reported walking to a local store five or more times a week. Part of this can probably be attributed to the completion of the town center.

·         An interest in social diversity is on the rise in the new urban community. Fifty percent of Orenco Station residents — who are 95% white — reported in 2007 that they would like greater diversity in their community. In 2002, when the makeup was also 95% white, only 35% had a desire for more diversity. A higher number of residents also supported more affordable housing in Orenco Station in 2007 relative to 2002. This finding could be interpreted in two ways — one is that Orenco residents are growing more open to diversity; another is that Orenco has failed to adequately attract minorities and accommodate those with lesser means.

·         Orenco Station gets very high ratings from residents, 95% of whom found the community superior to more typical suburbs. This rating held up even in light of the cost differential between Orenco Station and surrounding suburbs.


Livability in Transportation Guidebook (

This guidebook, produced for the U.S. Federal Highway Administration, illustrates how livability principles have been incorporated into transportation planning, programming, and project design, using examples from State, regional, and local sponsors. It is intended to be useful to a diverse audience of transportation agency staff, partners, decision-makers, and the general public, and is applicable in urban, suburban, and rural areas. While several of the example projects address capacity and operational issues on major roadways, the Guidebook primarily explores how transportation planning and programs can improve community quality of life, enhance environmental performance, increase transportation and housing choice while lowering costs, and support economic vitality. Many of the case studies resolve capacity and operational issues through a multimodal network and systems approach, reflecting better integration of land use with transportation.



Livability for Montana State Transport Planning (WTI 2012)

The report, Livability for Montana Transportation investigates the meaning of livability for use by the Montana Department of Transportation. Based on research and community outreach it developed the following definition: “Provide a transportation system that emphasizes a safe, maintained road network; allows for multimodal transportation opportunities; and considers local community values.” Although the research found that livability definitions vary, it identified several common themes related to transport:

·         Transportation systems should include all modes (air, automobile, public transit, bicycle, pedestrian, and other local modes).

·         Land use and transportation clearly influence each other. Transportation plans and projects should result in a transportation system that integrates with and supports local land use plans, affordable housing projects, and similar efforts that encourage a livable community structure.

·         Transportation systems in dense and developing areas should be highly connected. Cul-de-sacs and streets designed around specific land development limit connectivity. A well-designed grid system promotes connectivity.

·         Transportation projects should incorporate local values in the planning/design process. Such values may include aesthetically pleasing transportation corridors and pedestrian safety.

·         Safety and capacity for the automobile mode should not be ignored.

·         Transportation systems should seek to reduce fossil fuel use and greenhouse gases.

·         Transportation systems should provide access to jobs, education, health care, and services.

·         Transportation projects should be coordinated with other projects to leverage funding and accomplish livability goals.



Livability Literature Review (NARC 2012)

The study, Livability Literature Review: A Synthesis Of Current Practice by the

National Association of Regional Councils and the U.S. Department of Transportation examines ways to define and evaluate livability and sustainability, and how they relate to various current planning concepts including smart growth, complete streets, lifelong communities, safe routes to schools, context sensitive solutions/design, new urbanism, transit-oriented development and placemaking. It provides a foundation for applying more comprehensive community planning, including more accessible development and multi-modal transport planning.



Istanbul: An Accessable City – A City For People (Gehl Architects 2013)

Istanbul’s Historic Peninsula is one of the most important urban areas in the world: an area of extraordinary beauty where 8,500 years of human history and culture embrace the sea. It is home to tens of thousands of residents and 2.5 million daily visitors including workers, students, business owners, shoppers, tourists and worshippers. This puts undue strain on the area, especially the transport system, which is forced to accommodate more travelers in one day than the total population of most European cities. This area is currently strangled by unsustainable transport infrastructure. The network of old, narrow streets that gives the area its charm also makes it challenging to access the historic sites and to pass through the city walls to walk along the seashore.


EMBARQ Turkey, an international sustainable transportation advocacy group, commissioned one of the world’s leading planning organizations, Gehl Architects, to develop a comprehensive sustainable transportation plan titled, Istanbul: An Accesable City – A City For People which includes comprehensive data on walking, cycling and public transit conditions, detailed analysis, and specific recommendations for creating a more livable, sustainable, and more economically competitive city. It is a beautiful document which could serve as a model for livable community planning in other cities.



Commuting and psychological Wellbeing (Martin, Goryakin and Suhrcke 2014)

A study used data from eighteen waves of the British Household Panel Survey to evaluate how commute mode and duration affects overall psychological wellbeing. The results indicate that after accounting for changes in individual-level socioeconomic characteristics and potential confounding variables relating to work, residence and health, significant associations were observed between overall psychological wellbeing and commute travel. The results indicate that overall wellbeing was significantly higher when participants used active travel modes (walking and cycling) compared to car travel or public transport. Positive effects were also found with public transport and bus/coach travel when compared to car travel. Switching from car travel or public transport to active travel was associated with an improvement in wellbeing when compared to maintaining car travel or public transport. Negative associations were identified between time spent driving and wellbeing. The likelihood of reporting being constantly under strain or unable to concentrate was higher when participants used car travel, compared to active travel, after correction for multiple comparisons.



Living Streets Model Design Manual (

This manual, developed by a team of planners, engineers and designers for the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, presents best current urban street design practices to maximize health, safety, livability and sustainability. It provides information and a template that can be adopted, modified, customized, or expanded as appropriate. It includes chapters on street and intersection design, universal pedestrian access, pedestrian crossings, bikeway design, transit accommodation, traffic calming, streetscape ecosystems (including stormwater management, landscaping and street furniture), placemaking, land use policies, retrofitting suburbia, and community engagement.



Economic Value of Street Trees (Wolf 2002)

In a study by Professor Kathleen Wolf (2002), consumers were shown photos of retail streets with and without trees to inner-city residents across the US and asked how much they would be willing to pay for a variety of items at each location. Participants indicated that they were willing to pay nearly 12% more to shop on treed streets than on treeless ones. They perceived shops on tree-lined streets as better maintained, having a more pleasant atmosphere, and as likely having higher quality products. Participants also indicated that they were willing to travel farther to those shops (expanding the customer pool) and to pay more for parking.



Wit and Humor


Joe, Walter and George survived an airplane crash in the blazing hot Sahara desert. Searching around, they found an ancient bottle, which they opened, hoping it contained something to drink. Instead, a Genie emerged. Looking down at them, the magical creature spoke: “Thank you for releasing me. As a repayment, I will grant each of you one wish.”


Joe steps forward first. “Give me fresh water.” Magically, a bottle of imported mineral water appears before him and he drinks to satisfaction.


“You fool!,” says Walter. “You wasted your wish on nothing more than a bottle of water!  Let me show you how to make a more useful wish.” He tells the Genie, “Give me a tall glass of beer.” Magically, a yard of the finest appears before him and he drinks to satisfaction.


“You’re both fools,” says George. “All you can think about is a single drink. We have no idea how long we’ll be stuck here in the hot desert. I’ll use my wish for something that will last as long as we’re here.” He orders the Genie, “Give me a car door.”


Joe and Walter watch incredulously as George stands before a car door, while the Genie blows away in a cloud of dust. “Why did you ask for that?” inquires Joe.


“Can’t you see,” George explains, “When it gets hot we can roll down the window!”



References And Resources For More Information


AARP Livable Communities ( website provides  guidance on policies and planning practices to create safe, accessible, affordable and vibrant communities suitable for people of all ages and abilities.


AIA (2005), What Makes a Community Livable? Livability 101, American Institute of Architects (; at


Heather Allen (2008), Sit Next to Someone Different Every Day - How Public Transport Contributes to Inclusive Communities, Thredbo Conference (; at


Bruce and Donald Appleyard (1981 and 2012), Livable Streets, Routledge.


Bruce S. Appleyard (2011), Street Conflict, Power and Promise: Humanising the Auto-Mobility Paradigm, foreword for the Second Edition of Livable Streets; World Transport, Policy & Practice, Vol. 17.2 (; at


Bruce S. Appleyard, et al. (2014), “Toward Livability Ethics: A Framework to Guide Planning, Design, and Engineering Decisions,” Transportation Research Record 2403, Transportation Research Board (, pp. 62-71; at


Center for Livable Communities ( helps local governments and community leaders be proactive in their land use and transportation planning.


Janet Choi, Joseph F. Coughlin and Lisa D’Ambrosio (2013), “Travel Time and Subjective Well-Being,” Transportation Research Record 2357, Transportation Research Board (, pp. 100-108; at


CIVITAS ( is a European Commission supported initiative to help introduce sustainable urban transport strategies.


Complete Streets ( is a campaign to promote roadway designs that effectively accommodate multiple modes and support local planning objectives.


Congress for the New Urbanism (, provides a variety of information on innovative urban design.


CTE (Center for Transportation and the Environment) (2008), Improved Methods For Assessing Social, Cultural, And Economic Effects Of Transportation Projects, NCHRP Project 08-36, Task 66, Transportation Research Board ( and American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO); at


DEA & Associates (1999), Main Street…When a Highway Runs Through It, Transportation and Growth Management Program, Oregon DOT and Dept. of Environmental Quality (


EC (2002), Kids On The Move: A Handbook For Local Authorities And Schools, DG Environment on Child Mobility, European Commission (


Lisa Fabish and Peter Haas (2011), “Measuring the Performance of Livability Programs,” Transportation Research Record 2242, Transportation Research Board (, pp. 45-54; at


FHWA (1998), Flexibility in Highway Design, U.S. Federal Highway Administration, FHWA-PD-97-062 (; at


FHWA (2010), Livability in Transportation Guidebook: Planning Approaches that Promote Livability, FHWA-HEP-10-028, Federal Highway Administration. USDOT (; at


FHWA (2011), The Role of FHWA Programs In Livability: State of the Practice Summary,

Federal Highway Administration (; at


David J. Forkenbrock and Glen E. Weisbrod (2001), Guidebook for Assessing the Social and Economic Effects of Transportation Projects, NCHRP Report 456, Transportation Research Board (; at


Ann Forsyth, et al. (2016), Revitalizing Places: Improving Housing and Neighborhoods from Block to Metropolis, Harvard University Graduate School of Design (; at


Gallup (2011), “Mapping the Nation’s Well-Being,” New York Times (, 5 March 2011; at


Gehl Architects (2013), Istanbul: An Accessable City – A City For People, EMBARQ Turkey (; at


Rodney Harrell, Jana Lynott and Shannon Guzman (2014), What Is Livable? Community

Preferences of Older Adults, AARP Public Policy Institute (; at


Joshua Hart (2008), Driven to Excess: Impacts of Motor Vehicle Traffic on Residential Quality of Life In Bristol, UK, Masters Thesis, University of the West of England; at


Matthew J. Holian and Matthew E. Kahn (2012), The Impact of Center City Economic and Cultural Vibrancy on Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Transportation, MTI Report 11-13, Mineta Transportation Institute (; at


HUD-DOT-EPA (2010), Interagency Partnership for Sustainable Communities, U.S. Housing and Urban Development, Department of Transportation and Environmental Protection Agency (


Richard E. Killingsworth and Jean Lamming (2001), “Development and Public Health; Could Our Development Patterns be Affecting Our Personal Health?” Urban Land, Urban Land Institute (, July 2001, pp. 12-17


LACDPH (2011), Model Design Manual for Living Streets, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (


LCC (2008), Smart Growth Scorecard, Livable Communities Coalition (; at


FHWA Livability Initiate ( is a website that describes how the U.S. Federal Highway Administration is supporting livability objectives.


Todd Litman (1999), “Reinventing Transportation; Exploring the Paradigm Shift Needed to Reconcile Sustainability and Transportation Objectives,” Transportation Research Record 1670, Transportation Research Board (, pp. 8-12; available at


Todd Litman (2000), Evaluating Smart Growth and TDM; Social Welfare and Equity Impacts of Efforts to Reduce Sprawl and Automobile Dependency, VTPI (


Todd Litman (2005), Evaluating Transportation Land Use Impacts, Victoria Transport Policy Institute (; at


Todd Litman (2006), Transportation Cost and Benefit Analysis: Techniques, Estimates and Implications, Victoria Transport Policy Institute (


Todd Litman (2006), Community Cohesion As A Transport Planning Objective, Paper 07-0550, Transportation Research Board 2007 Annual Meeting; at


Todd Litman (2009), “Mobility as a Positional Good: Implications for Transport Policy and Planning,” Car Troubles: Critical Studies of Automobility and Auto-Mobility (Jim Conley and Arlene Tigar McLaren eds), Ashgate (; Introduction at; updated version at


Todd Litman (2010), Sustainability and Livability: Summary of Definitions, Goals, Objectives and Performance Indicators, VTPI (; at


Todd Litman (2017), Urban Sanity: Understanding Urban Mental Health Impacts and How to Create Saner, Happier Cities, Victoria Transport Policy Institute (; at


William Lucy (2002), Danger in Exurbia: Outer Suburbs More Dangerous Than Cities, University of Virginia (, 2002; summarized in


William Lucy and David L. Phillips (2006), Tomorrow’s Cities, Tomorrow’s Suburbs, Planners Press (


Living Streets (, formerly called the Pedestrians Association, works in the UK to improve the quality of streets and public spaces that people on foot can use and enjoy. It provides a variety of information on ways of making streets and urban neighborhoods more livable.


Adam Martin, Yevgeniy Goryakin and Marc Suhrcke (2014), “Does Active Commuting Improve Psychological Wellbeing? Longitudinal Evidence from Eighteen Waves of the British Household Panel Survey,” Preventive Medicine; at


Maaza C. Mekuria, Bruce Appleyard and Hilary Nixon (2017), Improving Livability Using Green and Active Modes: A Traffic Stress Level Analysis of Transit, Bicycle, and Pedestrian Access and Mobility, Mineta Transportation Institute (; at


METRO (1998), Livable Communities Workbook, Portland Metropolitan Planning Organization ( This document provides guidance for updating local land-use codes to help local governments implement the 2040 Growth Concept.


Charles Montgomery (2013), Happy City: Transforming Our Lives Through Urban Design, Doubleday (


Diana C. Mutz (2007), Hearing the Other Side: Deliberative versus Participatory Democracy, Cambridge University Press (


NARC (2012), Livability Literature Review: A Synthesis Of Current Practice,

National Association of Regional Councils ( and the U.S. Department of Transportation; at


NewUrbanism.Org ( provides a variety of information on New Urbanism.


Ottawa (2004), Area Traffic Management Guidelines; Appendices (Draft), Department of Public Works and Services City of Ottawa (; at and


Project for Public Spaces ( works to create and sustain public places that build communities. It provides a variety of resources for developing more livable communities, including workshops on “Context Sensitive Design”.


PPS (2008), Streets As Places: Using Streets To Rebuild Communities, Project for Public Spaces (; at


PPS (2008), The Quiet Revolution in Transportation Planning: How Great Corridors Make Great Communities, Project for Public Spaces (; at


Shannon H. Rogers, John M. Halstead, Kevin H. Gardner and Cynthia H. Carlson (2010), “Examining Walkability And Social Capital As Indicators Of Quality Of Life At The Municipal And Neighborhood Scales,” Applied Research In Quality of Life (, DOI: 10.1007/s11482-010-9132-4; at


John Stanley, David A. Hensher, Janet Stanley, Graham Currie, William H. Greene and Dianne Vella-Brodrick (2011), “Social Exclusion and the Value of Mobility,” Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, Vol. 45, (2), pp. 197-222; at and


San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association ( is an organization working to improve urban planning practices in the San Francisco region.


Marc Schlossberg, et al. (2013), Measuring the Performance of Transit Relative to Livability, University of Oregon and Portland State University for the Oregon Department of Transportation (; at


Seattle (1996), Making Streets that Work, City of Seattle ( Handbook for residents describes how to request various street improvements, including traffic calming.


Susan Shaheen, et al. (2016), Moving Toward a Sustainable California: Exploring Livability, Accessibility & Prosperity, UC Berkeley Transportation Sustainability Research Center ( for the California Department of Transportation; at


Smart Growth Network ( includes planners, govt. officials, lenders, community developers, architects, environmentalists and activists.


Social Research in Transport (SORT) Clearinghouse ( is a repository of reports and links to research findings focused on social issues in transport.


Linda Steg and Robert Gifford (2005), “Sustainable Transportation And Quality Of Life,” Journal of Transport Geography, Vol. 13/1, March, pp. 59-69; at


Robert Steuteville (2009), “New Urban Community Promotes Social Networks And Walking,” New Urban News (; at


Robert Steuteville (2016), “What is a livable Community, Anyway?,” Pubic Square, Congress for New Urbanism (; at


Walkable Communities ( helps create people-oriented environments.


Walkable and Livable Communities Institute ( provides training in building healthy communities and a range of topics related to integrating urban design and transportation planning to create more livable places.


Kate Williams and Stephen Green (2001), Literature Review of Public Space and Local Environments for the Cross Cutting Review, Oxford Centre for Sustainable Development (, for DTLR.


WLCI (2015), Imagining Livability Design Collection: A Visual Portfolio Of Tools And Transformations, Walkable and Livable Communities Institute (


Kathleen Wolf (2002), Retail And Urban Nature: Creating A Consumer Habitat, People/Plant Symposium, Amsterdam, Netherlands (


WSDOT (2003), Building Projects that Build Communities: Recommended Best Practices, Community Partnership Forum, Washington State Department of Transportation (


WTI (2012), Livability for Montana Transportation, Western Transportation Institute, Montana State University, for the Montana Department of Transportation (; at

This Encyclopedia is produced by the Victoria Transport Policy Institute to help improve understanding of Transportation Demand Management. It is an ongoing project. Please send us your comments and suggestions for improvement.




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