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The role of angularity in route choice: an analysis of motorcycle courier GPS traces

Turner, A.; (2009) The role of angularity in route choice: an analysis of motorcycle courier GPS traces. In: Stewart Hornsby, K. and Claramunt, C. and Denis, M. and Ligozat, G., (eds.) Spatial Information Theory. (pp. pp. 489-504). Springer Verlag: Berlin/ Heidelberg, Germany. Green open access

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Abstract

The paths of 2425 individual motorcycle trips made in London were analyzed in order to uncover the route choice decisions made by drivers. The paths were derived from global positioning system (GPS) data collected by a courier company for each of their drivers, using algorithms developed for the purpose of this paper. Motorcycle couriers were chosen due to the fact that they both know streets very well and that they do not rely on the GPS to guide their navigation. Each trace was mapped to the underlying road network, and two competing hypotheses for route choice decisions were compared: (a) that riders attempt to minimize the Manhattan distance between locations and (b) that they attempt to minimize the angular distance. In each case, the distance actually traveled was compared to the minimum possible either block or angular distance through the road network. It is usually believed that drivers who know streets well will navigate trips that reduce Manhattan distance; however, here it is shown that angularity appears to play an important role in route choice. 63% of trips made took the minimum possible angular distance between origin and destination, while 51% of trips followed the minimum possible block distance. This implies that impact of turns on cognitive distance plays an important role in decision making, even when a driver has good knowledge of the spatial network.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: The role of angularity in route choice: an analysis of motorcycle courier GPS traces
ISBN-13: 9783642038310
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-03832-7_30
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-03832-7_30
Language: English
Additional information: The original publication is available at www.springerlink.com Paper presented at the Conference on Spatial Information Theory: COSIT'09, Aber Wrac'h, France, September 2009. Please see http://www.geosensor.net/cosit/ for further details.
Keywords: Navigation and wayfinding, spatial cognition, distance estimation, route choice, spatial network analysis
UCL classification:
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/16229
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