Nov 12 2020

Like academics and research teams around the world, Healthy Active Cities is having to adapt research methodologies to ensure that they are COVID-19 safe. One of our new methods is to start thinking about how we can utilise social media, and particularly twitter, as a qualitative data source for all things active travel.

Our first efforts to think about large social media datasets qualitative are documented in another blog ‘Transport, Twitter and… Poems?’

In this blog we want to touch briefly upon language used within tweets referencing Low Traffic or Active Neighbourhoods. Low Traffic or Active Neighbourhoods are groups of residential roads where motor vehicle through traffic is discouraged or removed in order to create streets inviting for playing, walking, rolling and cycling. read more


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Nov 06 2020

The Active travel Academy at Westminster University along with partners in road policing, academics, media experts and cycling charities have put together new guidelines for reporting of road collisions. These guidelines reflect that whilst good reporting does exist, much reporting on collisions and road crime is accepting of road danger and dangerous driving whilst simultaneously reproducing negative and dehumanising portrayals of both cyclists and pedestrians.   read more


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Oct 23 2020

We in Healthy Active Cities have been thinking a lot about travel and transport during the current coronavirus situation and associated restrictions. Normally we would have been meeting and speaking with people, or even moving with people, to research experiences of travel, but during lockdown and following the guidance and rules in place we’ve had to be a little more creative. So, while face to face contact takes a back seat we’ve moved ourselves and our data collection online.

Over the last few months, we’ve trawled through over 100,000 tweets all about transport and covid-19 – we’re not in the ‘big data’ big leagues just yet, but we think that’s a big number! We’ve mined, scraped and filtered our way through tweets from across the UK to bring you some initial thoughts. With so many tweets in our dataset – from official guidance to transport memes, all of which we will revisit as we complete our analysis – we wanted a way of getting to know our data a little better. To do this we’ve used an analytical approach called i-poems. read more


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Oct 09 2020

It’s #walktoschoolweek 2020 (5th-9th October), so we’ve compared this weeks daily average car, pedestrian and cycle counts at school drop off in Levenshulme, Greater Manchester with daily averages since the school term started.

The data (Figure 1) shows that #WalktoSchoolWeek does not seem to have influenced modes of travel at any of the five sensors. These sensors are strategically located around Levenshulme.


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Oct 01 2020

Working with Manchester City Council and TfGM, the Manchester Urban Observatory have deployed various traffic and air quality monitoring equipment in Levenshulme (Figure 1) as part of the Levenshulme and Burnage Active Neighbourhood Scheme. Delayed initially by the COVID-19 lockdown, data collection by the monitoring equipment began on the 12th of August 2020.  

Using the traffic count data this blog reviews changes in car, pedestrian and cycle counts on weekdays between 7am and 9am, comparing counts for term-time and school holidays. Traffic sensors provide data for Errwood Road, Crossley Road, Chapel Street, Rostron Street and Chapel Street – outside Chapel Street Primary School (Figure 1). read more


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