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Accueil du site → Doctorat → États-Unis → 2020 → Making a Hot, Arid, Desert Arab City More Livable : Investigating the Role of Street Design in Enhancing Walkability in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Illinois Institute of Technology (2020)

Making a Hot, Arid, Desert Arab City More Livable : Investigating the Role of Street Design in Enhancing Walkability in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Almahdy, Omar Esam

Titre : Making a Hot, Arid, Desert Arab City More Livable : Investigating the Role of Street Design in Enhancing Walkability in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Auteur : Almahdy, Omar Esam

Université de soutenance  : Illinois Institute of Technology

Grade : Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) 2020

Résumé
Since the introduction of automobiles in the 1950s, cities in Saudi Arabia have evolved around an automobile infrastructure. Riyadh, the capital city of Saudi Arabia with a population of over 7.2 million, is facing an urban mobility challenge. For most inhabitants, driving is the only transportation available, since there is not yet an efficient public transit system. Currently, contemporary urban streets in Riyadh are limited to automobiles and inaccessible to pedestrians. Creating a walkable environment and improving walkability could solve numerous problems like the obesity crisis, the lack of city vibrancy, traffic congestion, environmental injustice, and social isolation. In this research, I investigate the climatic, geographic, social, and cultural factors that influence walkability in Riyadh as a hot, arid, and desert Arab city. The study uses mixed methods that include structured streetscape observations and pedestrian activity mapping as well as surveys and interviews with Riyadh’s citizens. Also, more data were collected through interviews with experts in Saudi urban planning and development. The issue of walkability in Riyadh extends beyond the design of the built environment. Many non-physical barriers hinder people from walking. Again, the perception of the streets as thoroughfares for automobiles only has deepened the problem. However, the lack of adequate sidewalks on most streets is the main reason why people do not walk. Also, this lack is a critical indicator of the dearth of efficient and proper urban design. The harsh climatic conditions along with the occasional sandstorms as well as polluted ambient air make the walking experience uncomfortable most of the year. To sum up, this study indicates that people’s awareness of the value and importance of having walkable streets and minimizing the reliance on motorized transport modes is a key driver in creating a pedestrian-friendly street

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Page publiée le 30 mai 2021