16. Active travel and road design using parametric visualisation
During the optioneering stage of a project, design is often rapidly evolving and critical decisions have to be made using limited information such as; precedent site photos, hand sketches and simple cross sections. Some decisions, whilst technically validated, could be sub-optimal from an end user’s perspective. This is particularly common when designing active travel measures in an urban environment, where the site is highly constrained and the ‘look and feel’ of the design is as important as the technical functionalities. Visual impact is also one of the indicators used in Transport Scotland’s latest Cycling by Design guidance when assessing different active travel measures and arrangements.
Mott MacDonald has recently developed a parametric visualisation tool, IDEA for Streets, that aims to fill this gap by enabling visualisations to be quickly generated using a suite of street design parameters. This allows key design principles such as; road space allocation, street furniture placement, surface finishes and the relationship between spatial design and movement activities to be visually brainstormed and reviewed live during a meeting.
In this presentation, we will focus on some of the typical challenges faced during the design process, and how parametric visualisations created using a game engine can help inform key design decision making on projects and future digital twin compatibility.