Innovative expert in transport engineering joins faculty

The article announcing I am at the University of Sydney has dropped, they now admit I work there:

The Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies has attracted leading transportation engineer and analyst Professor David Levinson to the School of Civil Engineering. innovative-expert-in-transport-engineering-joins-faculty-250x214

Professor Levinson arrives at the faculty with a breadth of knowledge gained through his previous work at the University of Minnesota, where he held the distinguished position as ‘Richard P. Braun / Center for Transportation Studies Chair in Transportation Engineering’, for the past decade.
Professor Levinson has authored six books and over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles on various aspects of transport engineering, as well as editing three collected volumes, with his most cited works covering the themes of transport accessibility and travel-time budget.
“I am excited to be able to contribute to the University’s goal of becoming a world leading centre for transport research and education,” said Levinson.

“Opportunities like this don’t arise very often and especially not in a cit
y that itself is currently undertaking a generation’s worth of major transport infrastructure projects simultaneously.”

Professor Levinson will be at the forefront of the recently launched Transport Engineering major available within the Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Civil),Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Mechatronics) and Bachelor of Project Management undergraduate degrees.
The Transport Engineering major provides students with the key mathematical and engineering methods required to plan, design, operate and manage the infrastructure necessary to achieve safe, economical and environmentally sustainable movement of people and goods.
He will also be involved in the transport specialisation available within the Master of Complex Systems postgraduate degree as well as offerings in the Institute for Transport and Logistics Studies (ITLS).
“The University already offers globally recognised programs through ITLS and we intend to complement this here in the faculty through the new transport engineering major,” said Levinson.
Professor Levinson’s research explores transport planning, policy, economics, and geography, the evolution and development of technology, and the intersection of transport and land use.
He is currently investigating the projected impact that electric and autonomous vehicles will have on our society and future transport networks.
“David is a welcome addition to the faculty and his expertise in the field of transport engineering will put us at the forefront of addressing the important issues relating to this growing area,” said Professor Archie Johnston, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies.

Minnesota Transportation Roundtable: Friday Aug. 1 at 6:30pm on KSTP-TV (Channel 5)

I am scheduled to be part of a live roundtable discussion on MN transportation on Friday Aug. 1 at 6:30pm on KSTP-TV (Channel 5). (This marks the 7th anniversary of the I-35W Mississippi River Bridge collapse).

The panel includes

  1. El Tinklenberg, Fmr. MNDOT Commissioner
  2. David Levinson
    Professor and RP Braun CTS Chair in Transportation
    University of Minnesota
  3. Kathy Quick Assistant Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs U of M
  4. Margaret Donahoe , Executive Director The MN Transportation Alliance

Edited: August 3, 2014

Updated: 08/01/2014 8:10 PM
Created: 08/01/2014 7:42 PM
By: Megan Stewart

The deadly 35W Bridge collapse in 2007 put “bridge safety” into the national spotlight.

Friday, Aug. 1, 2014, marks the seventh year since the structure fell into the Mississippi River during rush hour, killing 13 people and injuring 145 more.

The new bridge opened on Sept. 18, 2008, just before 5 a.m. It took only ten months to build.

But, less than seven years after the new bridge went up, a bridge inspection report by the Minnesota Department of Transportation shows the new bridge is aging.

KSTP sat down with four experts Friday to talk about bridge safety, along with the future of transportation.

The experts:

  • El Tinklenberg, former MnDOT Comissioner
  • David Levinson, professor from the University of Minnesota
  • Kathy quick, professor at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota
  • Margaret Donahoe, executive director of the Minnesota Transportation Alliance

Here is a link to the live panel discussion on KSTP TV:

The Theater of Public Policy – in Tweets

The “Transportationist” on T2P2

A reminder, and notice that tickets are cheaper in advance, so those of you who “plan” and those of you who are “economists” should be able to do this in advance.

The Theater of Public Policy at the Bryant Lake Bowl starts Monday

The “Transportationist” on T2P2

Dr. David Levinson is The Theater of Public Policy’s guest for their season debut.

A lot of folks are talking about transit in Minnesota. But only one show is bring the debates over buses, streetcars, highways, and bicycles to life.  Join us, The Theater of Public Policy this Monday, April 7th at the Bryant Lake Bowl Theater when we interview University of Minnesota professor of Civil Engineering David “The Transportationist” Levinson. Then watch as our cast of improvisers craft unscripted scenes inspired by the on-stage conversation.

Tickets are $7 in advance, or for students with I.D., kids under 12, or anyone with a Fringe Button. Otherwise, they are $10 at the door.

Get your tickets online now or by calling the Bryant Lake Bowl box office at (612) 825‑8949.

This will be the show’s first season at the historic Bryant Lake Bowl Theater in Uptown, Minneapolis (810 W. Lake Street). The theater will open at 6:00pm for all shows with the performance starting at 7:00pm.

Transit Revolution or a Streetcar to Heck? | The Theater of Public Policy

I am scheduled to appear at The Theater of Public Policy where they will be improv-ing Transit Revolution or a Streetcar to Heck?

The University of Minnesota’s resident civil engineering guru is known around the world as The Transportationist. Professor Levinson will join us to talk about the Twin Cities, traffic, streetcars, and why we don’t yet have hover bikes?

Doors at 6:00 – Show at 7:00

Tickets: $10 at the door OR $7 in advance, or $7 at the door with student I.D., kids under 12, or with a Fringe Button.

Buy Tickets here!

  • Monday, April 7, 2014
  • 7:00pm – 8:00pm
  • Bryant Lake Bowl (map)

  • 810 W Lake St

  • Minneapolis, MN 55408

California Travels

I return to California next week.

On Wednesday: I am presenting on the promise and perils of Enterprising Roads and Transit at the Smith Center at California State University – East Bay, January 29, 2014 – 2:00 p.m. PST

Evolving Transportation Networks
Evolving Transportation Networks

On Friday: I am presenting at the Institute of Transportation Studies UC Davis on January 31, 2014 on Evolving Transportation Networks. Time: January 31, Friday, 1:40 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. PST. 1605 Tilia, Room 1103, West Village. This might be webcast.

I haven’t been to Hayward since 1999 and Davis since 1997, and am looking forward to it.

The Week

I appear on The Week this week, discussing transportation with host Chris Riback, and other panelists Stephen Goldsmith (former Mayor of Indianapolis and Deputy Mayor of New York) and Barry Schulz of Atkins. Video clips of the discussion are available.

Some previous Transportationist blog entries are edited and reposted there for the new audience (5 Trends Shaping Transportation). The original is my 14 Trends Shaping Transportation post, which will make you 180% more informed.

So this is the answer to the question as to why I was in New York for 7 hours one day this summer.

Streetcars on the Daily Circuit – (update) Monday August 12, 10am

Streetcars, source=

I am scheduled to be on MPR’s The Daily Circuit : tomorrow (Thursday August 8) at 11:00 – 11:20 am Monday August 12, 10am to talk about streetcars in the Twin Cities.

Detour: Rerouting our way of thinking in traffic

Kim Ode interviewed me for the StarTribune: Detour: Rerouting our way of thinking in traffic:

“We are creatures of habit. So what happens when our driving habits are thwarted?

Apparently, we learn new habits.

David Levinson works in the department of civil engineering at the University of Minnesota, so he pays attention to such behavior. The Interstate 35 bridge failure offered an unexpected opportunity to study drivers.

Before the collapse, the bridge handled 140,000 crossings each day, he said.

‘After the collapse, we [City of Minneapolis, Hennepin County, MnDOT] counted traffic on other bridges and were at about 90,000,’ he said. ‘So 50,000 people decided they didn’t need to cross the river anymore.’

Levinson said that an industry rule-of-thumb is that one-third of drivers will take an offered detour, while others will seek their own routes or change their routines.

Once the new bridge opened, ‘a lot of people didn’t switch back, either because their new route was maybe as good, or they’d just developed a new habit,’ he said.

People don’t always take the shortest path somewhere, he added, which helps explain those who veer out of a traffic jam onto side streets in search of a route that, even though longer, lets them keep moving.

‘It’s what I call the illusion of motion,’ Levinson said.

So what’s worse? Winter or road construction? It depends.

‘In the case of winter, everyone is affected, but for a short duration until the roads are cleared,’ Levinson said. ‘Road projects affect a small amount of people, but for a long time.’

Bottom line: ‘People are happy when the road is fixed,’ he said. ‘I don’t know how happy they are that the road is being fixed.’

Kim Ode”