Designing Sidewalks and Trails for Access Part I

Review of Existing Guidelines and Practices


Federal Highway Administration


As part of Phase I of this project, an extensive literature review was conducted, and existing guidelines and recommendations for developing sidewalks and trails were compiled and analyzed. In addition, site visits were made to many towns and cities across the United States.

This report presents the findings of the Phase I study. A number of factors that affect the accessibility of sidewalks and trails in the United States are presented. The history of accessibility legislation and an overview of current accessibility laws are provided as a social backdrop to the study. The travel characteristics of people with disabilities, children, and older adults are analyzed in relation to their use of sidewalks and trails. The effects of current legislation pertaining to sidewalk and trail project planning and funding are reviewed. Current design practices used in the design of sidewalks
and trails are described and analyzed in terms of accessibility, engineering, and construction.

Filed in: Engineering, Plans and Policies, Funding

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