Joint forces for safer roads: sister projects unite in second road safety Webinar

The three sister projects of PHOEBE, SOTERIA and V4SAFETY are joining hands to present their respective updates and draw preliminary conclusions on their work after the first year.

The sister projects webinar will take place on January 30, 2023, from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM. This dynamic online event aims to foster dialogue and share invaluable to enhance road safety through data gathering, processing and transport modelling.
 
Specifically, a focus is set on the data collection and data use aspects of the three projects in order to highlight that transport modelling can enhance road safety of vulnerable road users, by testing adjustments in speed limits, infrastructure and vehicle safety first in a digital model before applying policies or adjusting roads. The audience will have the chance to engage with the experts of the three projects during Q&A segments and live polls, which will influence the panel debate in the second half of the webinar 

Agenda:

    • Welcome words
    • Project updates from PHOEBE, SOTERIA and V4SAFETY (incl. Q&A)
    • Information about the communication channels of each project
    • Mentimeter questions to the audience
    • Panel discussion on road safety and data use

PHOEBE celebrates its first anniversary at TUM in Munich 

The PHOEBE consortium celebrated its first anniversary during our latest consortium meeting in Munich on 13 and 14 December 2023. The Technical University of Munich hosted around 20 consortium partners to draw initial conclusions from the first 12 months of the project and plan for 2024. Besides these exchanges, social activities included a stroll across Christmas markets and the historic old town of the Bavarian capital.  

The meeting started with a small quiz about project outputs, highlighting the eight deliverables already completed by the project in excellent cooperation among consortium members across 75 partner meetings. This meeting included further discussions about communication goals for 2024, a short report on the first work package that was already concluded, as well as exchanges about PHOEBE KPIs for the three pilots and the integration of the two transport modelling frameworks of iRAP and Aimsun.  

A significant part of the two-day meeting discussed model integration and how the updated iRAP model fits into the PHOEBE framework. The latest version includes more granular information related to speed changes of vehicles and bikes, as well as data on the crossing distance of pedestrian level crossings.  

Another extensive discussion took place concerning the definition of KPIs for health, safety, environment and economic impacts. These KPIs and the socio-economic analysis will continue to be discussed and refined during the work in 2024, where parameters will be further aligned and refined.  

Last but not least, the communication plan for 2024 was another essential part of the exchange. This will include, among other things, homepage updates and a stronger connection with the sister projects and other projects, such as ELABORATOR, dealing with topics of sustainable mobility and road safety. Brainstorming on the outreach potential of PHOEBE concluded the discussions on communication and dissemination, resulting in many ideas and possibilities for the upcoming year.  

Overall, project partners drew a positive conclusion for the first year and are looking ahead to the upcoming tasks in 2024 and the consortium meeting in Valencia, which will take place in early June.  

PHOEBE shares its methods & principles in latest deliverable

PHOEBE has recently published the deliverable D1.2, which is pivotal for the project, as it provides the overall methodological framework in this project and the underlying connections and interactions between its different components. You can access D1.2 ‘Theoretical principles and methodological approach of the PHOEBE framework and selection of tools’ here. We also invite you to read our other publications in our PHOEBE library.

The framework in the document resembles a giant clock consisting of five components:

  1. travel demand models
  2. traffic microsimulation
  3. human behavioural models
  4. road safety assessment
  5. socio-economic impact assessment.

Each of these components ‘receives’ input data from another component, applies models on these data, and ‘gives’ output data to another component. The ‘giving’ and ‘receiving’ process between PHOEBE components resembles all the gears inside that giant clock.

The framework is looped in a longitudinal fashion i.e. it starts at a baseline scenario and iterates after a change has occurred in the transport system. As such, there is an inter-play of data and models between all five components. In addition, within the deliverable, a list of safety indicators is also provided for the safety assessment and to compare different scenarios (baseline vs. future). Finally, The technical development preparation is also described within the deliverable for the implementation of the framework.

The deliverable serves two main purposes:

  1. to be a new research and development framework that advances the state-of-the-art and can be used by other researchers and scholars for dynamically performing the road safety assessments through integrating the existing, emerging, and future changes within the demand models, traffic microsimulation, behavioural models, and road safety assessment models.
  2. to be a “blueprint” for how cities can establish and apply the predictive safety assessment framework efficiently and cost-effectively, providing a practical guide on how it works and how to implement it through the knowledge products such as socioeconomic analysis model, urban road safety assessment, human behaviour and demand modelling.

The PHOEBE framework will be implemented through three pilot cities including Athens (GR), Valencia (ES), and West Midlands (UK) through testing different urban mobility scenarios. Additionally, through research and development part of the project, further refinement and enhancement of the models within the framework is envisioned for broader use.

Join our community of practice

The PHOEBE project adopts an interdisciplinary approach to deal with a multidisciplinary problem: road safety. While developing a dynamic human-centred predictive safety assessment framework that brings together the interdisciplinary power of traffic simulation, road safety assessment, human behaviour, mode shift and induced demand modelling and new and emerging mobility data, PHOEBE welcomes external inputs to ensure that the work being done is going in the right direction.

Join our Community of Practice For Road Safety, if you are a local or regional transport authority, traffic simulation, data provider or mobility-sector service provider, researcher, simulation developer operating in the traffic sector, urban mobility planner, road safety practitioner, or mobility and modelling expert!

PHOEBE wants to hear professionals and experts and enable knowledge exchange by creating a space where people can benefit from increased knowledge and understanding of road safety, contribute to advancements within and beyond the project, and engage in significant discussions about the future of urban road safety.

If you want to find out more, register here, and we will get in touch with you!

Our recent work

PHOEBE defines framework for pilot testing with latest deliverable

PHOEBE assesses state-of-the-art of transport modelling tools

Collaboration key to predictive transport safety framework

PHOEBE consortium will meet in Munich next week

PHOEBE will gather for its fifth consortium meeting from 13 to 14 December at the premises of Technische Universität München (TUM) in the Bavarian capital of Munich. We spoke with our host Arunava Putatunda (Doctoral researcher at TUM) about the impact of PHOEBE on the university and its research, as well as our plans for the consortium meeting.

Good morning Arunava, could you summarise our third physical consortium meeting at TUM?

Since its start, the project PHOEBE has been more than one year old at the time of our meeting. In the last year, the team has worked hard to gather relevant information through desk research, which will enable PHOEBE to look beyond the state-of-the-art in road safety.

Moreover, the team worked on developing an initial framework for the entire project and reviewed state-of-the-art analytical models about traffic safety and flow, travel demand and behaviour and socio-economic assessment. Additionally, we carried out major brainstorming sessions, debates and meetings concerning the data collection for the three pilots.

In Munich we will discuss issues like further fine-tuning of the project framework, data needs and outreach and communication, including a communication and event plan for 2024, as well as project management topics and KPIs for our three pilots.

Let’s first look back onto the first year of PHOEBE. What was TUM’s main undertaking in PHOEBE and on which deliverables have you worked so far?

TUM were working on three crucial components of the project:

  1. Reviewing state-of-the-art literature:
    on the topics of mode choice and travel demand modelling, induced travel demand modelling and socio-economic assessment of the traffic interventions.
  2. Development of the initial detailed project framework:
    collaborating with all the project collaborators, the methodology of the suitable analytical model, selection on the topics mentioned above and data needs pertaining the topics discussed above.
  3. Drafting of two deliverables:
    ‘Literature and state-of-the-art review’ (D1.1) and on the ‘detailed initial framework of the project, model and method selections and the data requirements’ (D1.2).

TUM has great expertise in transport modelling. What aspects will you assess in PHOEBE and specifically concerning  ‘mode shift and induced demand modelling’?

TUM has an excellent track record of working on transport travel demand and behaviour modelling. In PHOEBE, we plan to investigate some important and less explored aspects of travel demand and behaviour modelling that relate to the risk perceptibility of the population concerning the choice of transport modes. In addition, we plan to investigate the causes and effects of induced travel demand on mode choice and the socio-economic impacts of the interventions concerning traffic safety.

How will PHOEBE contribute to the broader research of TUM?

We are one of Germany’s largest publicly funded universities, which is committed to serving the people, nature, and society by imbibing cutting-edge sustainable research practices and promoting sustainable innovations. The components of PHOEBE that we have already discussed will allow a better understanding of the traffic safety and broader impacts of the newer modes of transport, such as micro-mobility.

Looking towards 2024, what are your aims within PHOEBE?

We plan to start 2024 with the required data collection, followed by the model development processes, namely model estimation, calibration, and validation. These models will be the foundation of the project’s framework. Another significant milestone of the project is to link the developed models from all the collaborators to form a seamless analytical forecasting system. We will likely start brainstorming this process during the third quarter of 2024.

Thank you for these detailed elaborations. Let’s briefly talk about our visit to Munich. Which locations will TUM show the consortium? 

Since the 5th consortium will be very close to Christmas, we plan to visit the city centre of Munich with its Marienplatz, the main square where the charming Christmas Market is located. I am sure that this year, we will have a white Christmas, and a couple of Glühwein with local German delicacies, such as Makronen, Schneeballen, Stollen and Kletznbrot, which will be a perfect time out for all during the consortium.

PHOEBE defines framework for pilot testing with latest deliverable

A significant step towards real-world testing was made with the publication of the deliverable D4.1, which provides the groundwork for the demonstrations in our three use cases of Athens, Valencia, and West Midlands. The document, which is available here, outlines the three plans as follows:

  • Athens:
    The Greek capital aims to enhance several urban environments by reducing car lanes on numerous avenues, while establishing a comprehensive network of bicycle routes and striving for the implementation of a 30km/h speed limit.
  • Valencia:
    The Spanish city is assessing several interventions that will impact road user behaviour, mode selection, induced demand, and safety outcomes. Given the challenges of 400-500 annual crashes involving cyclists, Valencia aims to test the effectiveness of different policies and interventions to promote road safety through the PHOEBE framework​​.
  • The West Midlands:
    The region around Birmingham analyses the impact of transport interventions, such as new cycling facilities and highway and junction remodelling, on road user behaviour and the respective safety outcomes. Furthermore, the case study also looks at the influence of autonomous vehicles in urban networks. The goal is to encourage active travel, enhance the safety for cyclists and pedestrians, and improve overall transportation efficiency in the region.

These use case data and insights are foundational for testing the PHOEBE Framework, ensuring alignment with the project’s methodological standards and providing a comprehensive view of the urban mobility and safety landscape across these regions. If you would like to learn more about the three pilots, listen to our pilot leader interviews here.