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Special Issue "Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Engineering and Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2019

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Justin Bishop

Arup, 13 Fitzroy St, London W1T 4BQ, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: transport, built environment; electric power generation; sustainability and sustainable development

Special Issue Information

Most of us live in an urban environment. The increase in both vehicle use and urbanization will result in more of us being exposed to long-term harmful, transport-related emissions. There are additional externalities, such as noise, congestion and accidents, which affect human health and well-being. However, motorized transport is necessary for the city, supporting flows of people and goods over medium to long distances. Moreover, efficient and affordable transport links are essential for ensuring fair access to opportunities for citizens across the socio-economic spectrum. The challenge remains how to deliver cities which can grow economically, remain well-connected and be attractive and healthy places to live.

This Special Issue is focused on real-world case studies demonstrating solutions to overcome this challenge. Examples include technology and/or policy interventions in vehicles, fuels, network operation, building fabrics, urban/land use planning and the natural environment.

Authors should identify clearly:

  • The novelty of their approach;
  • The scale of the impact, testing for sensitivity and accounting for uncertainty;
  • How unintended consequences and problem shifting may be accounted for and mitigated;
  • Gaps in technology or policy necessary to deliver the research outcomes; and
  • The relevance of the research outcomes to other cities.

Dr. Justin Bishop
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • sustainability
  • sustainable development
  • air quality
  • human health and well-being
  • externalities
  • buildings and materials
  • urban planning
  • natural environment
  • vehicles
  • public transport
  • freight

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Sustainable Highway Maintenance: Optimization of Existing Highway Vertical Alignment Considering Pavement Condition
Sustainability 2019, 11(6), 1659; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11061659
Received: 13 February 2019 / Revised: 6 March 2019 / Accepted: 7 March 2019 / Published: 19 March 2019
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Abstract
Any change in the geometric configuration of the existing road affects other dependent elements such as travel time, fuel consumption, and existing pavement. This paper quantifies these effects and finds an optimum geometric configuration. Three separate models are developed in this research: (1) [...] Read more.
Any change in the geometric configuration of the existing road affects other dependent elements such as travel time, fuel consumption, and existing pavement. This paper quantifies these effects and finds an optimum geometric configuration. Three separate models are developed in this research: (1) the travel time model which predicts vehicles flow speed on the specified geometric condition, traffic composure, and evaluates the imposed costs to the road users; (2) the fuel consumption model, which estimates needed propulsive force and anticipated fuel for vehicles passing through the road; and (3) the pavement rehabilitation cost model considering two main constraints of existing pavement condition and project line elevation. The developed pavement rehabilitation model proposes the best solution for pavement rehabilitation practice and computes associated costs. Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO) is used to find the optimum solution in a minimization problem search space. The proposed model is applied to a real-world case study. Results show that there is an extremely less tendency for change, even with the existence of adverse geometric conditions, when there is a relatively good pavement condition. In the case of deteriorated pavement conditions, economic justification for geometric modification is required. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment)
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Open AccessArticle The Association between Urban Public Transport Infrastructure and Social Equity and Spatial Accessibility within the Urban Environment: An Investigation of Tramlink in London
Sustainability 2019, 11(5), 1229; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11051229
Received: 28 December 2018 / Revised: 12 February 2019 / Accepted: 20 February 2019 / Published: 26 February 2019
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Abstract
The pursuit of sustainability has been at the forefront of contemporary planning initiatives. However, most recent research has focused on the environmental and economic aspects of developing sustainable urban environment, whilst largely neglecting the social aspects. Contemporary political thinking in the UK often [...] Read more.
The pursuit of sustainability has been at the forefront of contemporary planning initiatives. However, most recent research has focused on the environmental and economic aspects of developing sustainable urban environment, whilst largely neglecting the social aspects. Contemporary political thinking in the UK often disregards the potential of the urban infrastructure to improve social equity. The aim of this study was to analyse the impact of transport infrastructure on a variety of social measures, in an empirical and ideologically unbiased fashion, using both quantitative and qualitative methods. We selected “Tramlink” as a case study: a light-rail system in the London Borough of Croydon which began operation in 2000. We used quantitative methods, including advanced spatial statistics, to produce a more detailed analysis of social equity than has been previously published. This acknowledges that determining localised issues can produce more informed and effective policy interventions. Our results demonstrate that the physical properties of transport infrastructure and the non-physical attributes of society, in combination, help to create opportunities for individuals to succeed. We also find that in order to reduce the negative effects of austerity, public money could be more effectively spent if diverted to areas that are most in need which can be highlighted through localised investigations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment)
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Open AccessArticle Urban Form and Mobility Choices: Informing about Sustainable Travel Alternatives, Carbon Emissions and Energy Use from Transportation in Swedish Neighbourhoods
Sustainability 2019, 11(2), 548; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11020548
Received: 23 December 2018 / Revised: 17 January 2019 / Accepted: 18 January 2019 / Published: 21 January 2019
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Abstract
The lack of mobility choices in many Swedish neighbourhoods and cities designed for automobiles hinders the possibilities to shift towards more sustainable travel alternatives. Urban designers and planners can help with redesigning these neighbourhoods and creating urban forms that encourage walking, cycling and [...] Read more.
The lack of mobility choices in many Swedish neighbourhoods and cities designed for automobiles hinders the possibilities to shift towards more sustainable travel alternatives. Urban designers and planners can help with redesigning these neighbourhoods and creating urban forms that encourage walking, cycling and increased use of public transportation if they are informed about the environmental performance and carbon implications of transportation systems in existing and newly planned neighbourhoods. This paper proposes a mobility choices model based on urban form and accessibility factors commonly used in urban planning and design practices. The mobility choices model produces heat maps and visually informs about the integration with walking, cycling, public transportation and private car, modal shares, carbon emissions and transportation energy use. This information can (potentially) trigger urban transformation or redesign to better integrate sustainable travel alternatives in these neighbourhoods and contribute to more sustainable cities. Many houses can have an excellent environmental performance as buildings but they can be located at a distance where it is impossible to walk, cycle or use public transportation. The benefits of energy efficient and carbon neutral home then disappears with extensive travel and commuting by automobile. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment)
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Open AccessArticle Noise Indicators for Size Distributions of Airborne Particles and Traffic Activities in Urban Areas
Sustainability 2018, 10(12), 4599; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10124599
Received: 6 November 2018 / Revised: 25 November 2018 / Accepted: 29 November 2018 / Published: 5 December 2018
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Abstract
The aim of this study was to explore the relationships among the particle number concentration (PNC), noise, and traffic conditions. Field measurements were conducted to measure the temporal variabilities of the noise levels and PNC over 24 h in a location adjacent to [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to explore the relationships among the particle number concentration (PNC), noise, and traffic conditions. Field measurements were conducted to measure the temporal variabilities of the noise levels and PNC over 24 h in a location adjacent to three main traffic roads in Seoul, Korea. The PNC was measured in the range of 0.3 to 10 µm. The noise data was measured by utilizing both the overall levels and spectral characteristics. Traffic data including volumes and speeds of vehicles on the roads were also collected. The results showed that the correlations among the three key parameters varied depending on changes in the noise frequency and particle size. The noise levels at 100–200 Hz were positively correlated with traffic volume and submicron particles. In contrast, they exhibited inverse correlations with the traffic speed and the number of larger particles (>2.5 µm). Compared to noise levels at 100–200 Hz, noise levels at 1–2 kHz exhibited reverse relationships between the traffic and PNC. Submicron particles (0.3–1.0 µm) tended to be more strongly associated with noise levels during the daytime, while those greater than 2.5 µm maintained relatively stable correlations with the noise throughout the day. The findings address the importance of temporal and spectral-specific monitoring of air and noise pollutants for a better understanding of the exposure of the community to air and noise pollution. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment)
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Open AccessArticle Prediction of Life Cycle Carbon Emissions of Sponge City Projects: A Case Study in Shanghai, China
Sustainability 2018, 10(11), 3978; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10113978
Received: 1 October 2018 / Revised: 22 October 2018 / Accepted: 25 October 2018 / Published: 31 October 2018
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Abstract
In recent years, China has been vigorously carrying out the planning and implementation of Sponge City. Since the implementation of Sponge City projects involves substantial materials and energy consumption, it is significant to account corresponding carbon emissions and sinks. The existed studies about [...] Read more.
In recent years, China has been vigorously carrying out the planning and implementation of Sponge City. Since the implementation of Sponge City projects involves substantial materials and energy consumption, it is significant to account corresponding carbon emissions and sinks. The existed studies about carbon emission of stormwater management measures, however, are not able to take the whole life cycle and different facilities into consideration. Therefore, this study develops a comprehensive accounting model based on Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) guidelines and life cycle assessment (LCA) method to predict carbon emissions and carbon sinks of Sponge City projects more comprehensively and accurately. The model is applied to an actual residential community in Shanghai as a case study. Results show that the total indirect carbon emission is estimated to be 774,277 kg CO2 eq during a 30-year lifespan, among which carbon emissions from operation and maintenance phases are 2570 kg CO2 eq/year and 7309 kg CO2 eq/year, respectively, both directly proportional to the service life of the facilities. Three kinds of achievable carbon sinks are carbon sequestration in green space (5450 kg CO2 eq/year), carbon sink from rainwater utilization (15,379 kg CO2 eq/year) and carbon sink from runoff pollutant removal (19,552 kg CO2 eq/year). Carbon neutrality is expected to be reached after approximately 19 years. The established carbon emission accounting model can contribute to better planning and construction of Sponge City in China and enhance further energy conservation and carbon emission reduction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment)
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Open AccessArticle Karst Development Mechanism and Characteristics Based on Comprehensive Exploration along Jinan Metro, China
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3383; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103383
Received: 28 August 2018 / Revised: 17 September 2018 / Accepted: 19 September 2018 / Published: 21 September 2018
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Abstract
Jinan is the capital of Shandong Province and is famous for its spring water. Water conservation has become the consensus of Jinan citizens and the government and the community. The construction of metro engineering in Jinan has lagged behind other cities of the [...] Read more.
Jinan is the capital of Shandong Province and is famous for its spring water. Water conservation has become the consensus of Jinan citizens and the government and the community. The construction of metro engineering in Jinan has lagged behind other cities of the same scale for a long time. The key issue is the protection of spring water. When metro lines are constructed in Jinan karst area, the water-inrushing, quicksand, and piping hazards can easily occur, which can change the groundwater seepage environment and reduce spring discharge. Therefore, we try to reveal the development conditions, mechanism, and mode of karst area in Jinan. In addition, we propose the comprehensive optimizing method of “shallow-deep” and “region-target” suitable for exploration of karst areas along Jinan metro, and systematically study the development characteristics of the karst areas along Jinan metro, thus providing the basis for the shield tunnel to go through karst areas safely and protecting the springs in Jinan. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment)
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Open AccessArticle Multi-Criteria Life Cycle Approach to Develop Weighting of Sustainability Indicators for Pavement
Sustainability 2018, 10(7), 2325; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10072325
Received: 26 April 2018 / Revised: 29 June 2018 / Accepted: 2 July 2018 / Published: 5 July 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1238 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In the past decade, sustainable practices have been adopted in transportation infrastructure projects to reduce adverse environmental effects. To evaluate the sustainability levels of engineering projects holistically, rating systems have been developed to assess and reward points based on various sustainable best practices [...] Read more.
In the past decade, sustainable practices have been adopted in transportation infrastructure projects to reduce adverse environmental effects. To evaluate the sustainability levels of engineering projects holistically, rating systems have been developed to assess and reward points based on various sustainable best practices (indicators). This study aimed to establish a systematic methodology to weight indicators related to materials and resources most commonly used by various transportation infrastructure rating systems based on their contributions to sustainability. A multi-criteria approach for assessing the indicators based on three criteria, indicator performance, environment, and cost, was designed. The criteria were then used to evaluate the indicators and assessed points based on their contributions toward sustainability. Results revealed that state-of-the-art engineering practices could differentiate weighting of points from the typical linear point increase that is traditionally used. In addition, a maximum cap is crucial to ensure that some indicators do not end up being weighted disproportionately. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment)
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Open AccessArticle Built Environment and Parking Availability: Impacts on Car Ownership and Use
Sustainability 2018, 10(7), 2285; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10072285
Received: 27 May 2018 / Revised: 25 June 2018 / Accepted: 28 June 2018 / Published: 2 July 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1463 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Along with urbanization and economic development, the number of private cars has increased rapidly in recent years in China, which contributes to concerns about traffic congestion, hard parking, energy consumption, and emissions. This study aims to investigate the joint effect of built environment [...] Read more.
Along with urbanization and economic development, the number of private cars has increased rapidly in recent years in China, which contributes to concerns about traffic congestion, hard parking, energy consumption, and emissions. This study aims to investigate the joint effect of built environment and parking availability on car ownership and use based on a household travel survey conducted in Changchun, China. The binary logistic model was first employed to investigate the determinants of the car ownership in Changchun. Next, this study examined the potential impacts of the built environment and parking availability on car use for the journey to work. The result shows that built environment and parking availability can be both significantly associated with car ownership and use after controlling for the socio-economic characteristics. Moreover, in contrast with the model ignoring the parking availability, the model for car use considering the joint effect fit the data better. The results indicate that car dependency depends on the joint effect of the built environment and parking availability. These results suggest that transit-oriented urban expansion and compact land use can contribute to reducing car commuting. Meanwhile, parking restrictions at both trip start and end would be effective for sustainable transport because parking oversupply could encourage more car dependency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Transportation and the Built Environment)
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