A/B Street: using OpenStreetMap for citizen bicycling advocacy
2021-10-01, 10:00–10:30, Puerto Madryn

A/B Street is an open source traffic simulator built on OpenStreetMap and public census data. Users can reallocate existing road space from street parking and driving to create protected bicycle lanes and public transit-only lanes. The software is designed to be easy for the general public to explore and promote transportation changes in their city to reduce the dependency on driving. This talk will cover some case studies of A/B Street advocacy in Seattle, and describe how to use it anywhere.

A/B Street (abstreet.org) is an open source traffic simulator built on OpenStreetMap and public census data. It simulates car, bicycle, foot, and public transit traffic, and runs on Mac, Windows, Linux, and directly in the web browser. A/B Street allows the user to reallocate existing road space between cars, protected cycle lanes, transit-only lanes, and street parking. Users can also modify traffic signal timing and create access-restricted neighborhoods. Individual and aggregate results from the simulation can be compared before and after the changes, creating a simple way to evaluate potential changes.

A/B Street has been designed for the general public to easily explore proposals for reducing dependency on cars. This talk will cover some specific cases in Seattle where the software has been used to propose real changes, like opening a shortcut through a gated community for cycle and foot traffic to avoid dangerous roads. We'll discuss how to start using A/B Street in your area, the challenges in finding other open data-sets required, and some options for how to publish results.

Authors and Affiliations

Dustin Carlino (no affiliation)
Michael Kirk (no affiliation)
Yuwen Li (University of Washington, Seattle, United States)

Requirements for the Attendees

Feel free to try A/B Street before the talk: https://github.com/a-b-street/abstreet




Open and Reproducible Science


2 - Basic. General basic knowledge is required.

Language of the Presentation


Dustin is a software engineer living in Seattle. He has been interested in cartography, open source software, and making transportation more efficient for over a decade.

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