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D-1 APPENDIX D Pilot Survey Experiences and Lessons Learned This appendix describes experiences and lessons learned in ing. The on-site management company provided permission conjunction with the pilot studies. Survey results are described to conduct surveys. The management company wanted to in Chapter 3. review each survey instrument to make sure questions or infor- The project panel requested that the two initial pilot study mation was not intrusive. A commitment was made not to sites have different character--one a TOD and the other large impede movement to and from businesses or residences and to enough to require driving to complete at least some internal accept interview refusals without question. Only exit interviews trips. Two developments were sought that would meet those were permitted. Each survey crew member had to be identified general criteria. A third development was later added courtesy with a badge issued by the management company. The man- of a different sponsor. agement company was very cooperative and helpful before and during the survey. The second site was Atlantic Station in Atlanta, Georgia. Site Survey Permissions Even though Atlantic Station had opened less than a year Permissions earlier, ownership there had changed from a single developer who had welcomed studies of the development to several dif- The first step after selection of the preferred steps was to ferent owners with varying levels of interest. Owners were pri- obtain permission from the owners or managers of the selected marily concerned about having patrons and residents inter- developments. The initial phone conversation requested per- viewed and did not want to risk customers not wanting to do mission to: business at a place where interviews were being conducted. Permissions were secured with some limitations about where conduct brief interviews of people entering or leaving build- interviews could be conducted. Only exit interviews were per- ings and businesses during weekday A.M. and P.M. peak peri- mitted. Some access/parking-related information was to be ods (two days each); provided by the parking operator rather than be collected count people entering and exiting each entrance where directly. surveys were being conducted; and The third development added later was Legacy Town Center conduct a (person trip) cordon count around the develop- in Plano, Texas. The sponsor for that survey specified a scenario ment(s) site being surveyed. unrelated to this NCHRP project, but which permitted a devel- opment meeting this project's requirements. Although the The owner or manager was also requested to provide infor- master developer was still active on an adjacent block of land, mation quantifying development characteristics, a site plan, this development, too, had multiple developers and owners. In and other information needed to complete the survey and the end, only one owner declined to permit interviews. How- analyze the results per the procedures described in the interim ever, again there was concern about the effect of inbound inter- report. The initial phone conversation was followed up with a views on business. As a result, the inbound trip information letter or email message requesting permission and describing was obtained by asking outbound respondents about the trip the surveys to be conducted. they had made to reach the building from which they were exit- One of the initial sites selected for surveys was Mockingbird ing. Unfortunately, that information was often incomplete or Station (a TOD) in Dallas, Texas. Mockingbird Station had for trips outside the time periods of interest. The results were been the subject of several different types of studies since open- surveys with much more outbound than inbound trip data.

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D-2 Lessons Learned travel patterns involving internal and external trips for each land use type. Interview information included both origin and The permissions process took much longer than had been destination land use types, time and mode of trip, original experienced by the researchers in past surveys. The researchers mode of access to the development. The owners-managers had recommended the first two sites because the owners had demanded brief interviews. previously welcomed the attention and information that While the intent was to interview at every land use type rep- resulted from different types of case studies. However, changes resented within each study area, it was recognized from the in ownership from original developers to owner-operators or beginning that interviews would not be able to be conducted investors using operating companies made obtaining permis- at all entrances (permissions withheld at some; number of sions significantly more challenging at all three developments. entrances to cover) all the time. It was also understood that the In the case of Atlantic Station, the development has been interviews would represent a sample of the total trips made at structured so it may be possible for each commercial block interview locations because people could not be detained for and each residential project to be sold to separate owners. their interview until the interviewer completed a previous inter- Since surveys to determine internal capture need to cover view. Hence, counts of people entering and exiting entrances samples of all different land use types in the survey area, where surveys were being conducted were necessary. Inter- diverse ownership will make it much more difficult to obtain views were conducted at every entrance at Mockingbird Station the necessary permissions. (over 50). At Atlantic Station there were too many entrances One of the considerations for future surveys of this type to interview at all of them and permissions could not be should be the ownership structure of the buildings or busi- obtained for all businesses so sampling had to be performed nesses to be surveyed. From this experience, it would appear by land use (factored proportionally by square footage within that original developers (who will be more interested in reduced each land use). traffic impacts due to internal capture) are possibly more will- In addition to interviews and door counts, person trips by ing to have surveys conducted and single local owners may mode were counted at each cordon location plus some added also be easier to interest. locations where needed to separate different types of destina- An additional aid would be a completed survey report so the tions. For example, at both developments some parking areas owners-managers are able to see an example of what will be for certain buildings were cordoned off or otherwise parti- conducted. There was considerable reluctance to be involved tioned from general parking and it was necessary to count in something new with uncertain results, although most of the entrances to those areas separately. owner-manager representatives were able to grasp the concept Surveys were conducted between 6:30 A.M. and 10:00 A.M. of internal capture after extended discussions. and between 4:00 P.M. and 7:00 P.M. The same interview Even if favorable ownership structures are encountered, the approach was used at all three developments. The research complexity of the owner-tenant relationships may result in a team secured about 40 temporary personnel for each survey longer approval period than for single-use or single manager- to conduct interviews or perform counts. Not all persons operator developments. A period of one month should be worked all shifts; since much of each development was retail allowed for a site, but if difficulties arise, it could take two or space and since most retailers did not open until 10 A.M., fewer even three months to secure complete permissions and author- personnel were needed for the A.M. peak. Three members of izations to proceed. the research team supervised the surveys. Finally, the limitation to only exit interviews means that data Cordon counts were conducted at all cordon locations for for inbound trips must come from the exit interviews. A com- at least one A.M. and one P.M. survey period. As applicable, promise could be to conduct exit interviews at retail, restau- inbound and outbound counts were made by the following rant, and cinema establishments and attempt to obtain inter- modes: views in both directions elsewhere. Where only exit interviews are permitted, it should be recognized that the inbound data personal vehicle: may be limited and that interviewers need to persist to obtain complete information for the inbound trips. 1 person, 2 people, 3 people, Field Data Collection 4+ people; motorcycle; Surveys delivery truck; The surveys were built around exit interviews. The objective walk; and was to obtain for both A.M. and P.M. peak periods a sample of bike.

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D-3 Mockingbird Station had no on-site transit routes (both Use of buses for trips to and from Legacy Town Center was light rail and bus transit serve a transit station adjacent to the almost non-existent. No special interviews were conducted for site). A shuttle connects Atlantic Station to a nearby MARTA that mode. rail station; the shuttles were surveyed separately. One bus Cost and complexity were the two primary reasons given in route passed along two sides of Legacy Town Center. telephone conversations with consultants and public agencies Door counts were made both inbound and outbound dur- about why more internal capture studies had not been con- ing interview periods. Whenever interviews were being con- ducted. The research team elected to cap the survey team size ducted on a building face, all doors were counted on that at about 40 people during the P.M. peak for cost considerations. building face for that period. The cost for temporary labor to conduct the surveys may dif- Interviews were conducted at both developments 6:30 A.M. fer by location, and it did for the Dallas, Atlanta, and Plano sur- 10 A.M. and 4 P.M.7 P.M. beginning on a Tuesday afternoon veys, but the direct cost for the Atlanta team was approximately and ending on a Thursday morning. With minor exceptions, $19,000 using a temporary employment agency and personnel all interviews were conducted at building access points as classified as interviewers. people exited the building. Interviewers were assigned either In all three cases the temporary employment agency had single entrances where activity was heavy or groups of entrances difficulty securing the requested 40 persons. In one city, a where they were close together and activity was low to mod- second agency was used to provide people. In another city, erate. Interviewers were instructed to interview everyone they the agency provided a large percentage of people who could could, but not to try to have anyone wait to be interviewed work some but not all shifts. All count data were compiled while another interview was being completed. Interviewers by 15-minute period. All interviews were maintained as sep- were to be assertive in trying to initiate interviews but were arate trip records. told to accept refusals without question. Interviewers assigned to multiple entrances were to watch people enter business Lessons Learned and try to intercept them as they departed. It was estimated that effective interviewers were turned down about one-third The cordon counts were easily completed for all three devel- of the time. opments with no problems. They were easy enough so people On the average, interviewers were able to complete inter- who could not successfully perform the interviews (or did not views with 10 to 15 percent of all exiting individuals. Produc- want to do interviews) could accurately complete the counts. tivity varied by the amount of activity at the assigned location, Men were assigned locations that were out of view of passing the assertiveness of the interviewers, and the interviewer skill. pedestrians (e.g., some parking garage entrances). Supervisors All personnel were trained prior to the first shift. A few trainees made it a priority to locate counters so they would be visible were not used as a result of unsuccessful training. Some others but not distractions to passersby. Supervisors also walked by were either reassigned to counting jobs or discharged during every isolated location at least hourly. All personnel also had the first shift if supervisor checks showed that the interview cell phones and the supervisors' phone numbers in case an approach or results were insufficient. About 25 percent of the emergency arose or relief was needed. No safety or security dif- original personnel did not work after their initial shift. ficulties or concerns were reported by any of the survey team The plan for all three developments was to interview as at any development. Use of cell phones and men in isolated many people as possible using about 2025 interviewers in locations was successful. the P.M. peak (when all businesses were open) and a lesser Some interviewers, despite successful training, were not suc- number during the A.M. peak commensurate with the num- cessful because they were not effective at approaching people ber of businesses open. This required interviewing at differ- quickly enough to get their attention. Assertiveness was the ent locations each day, although some of the lower activity deficiency in most cases. Despite practice interviews in a train- entrances were covered both days. ing atmosphere, the only way to confirm a good interview At Mockingbird Station, inbound interviews were also con- approach is in the field with practice interviews under watch by ducted at the entrance from the DART rail station that is served a supervisor. This should be conducted in advance of initiating by two rail lines and six bus routes. The purpose was to ascer- surveys. tain modes of access. At Atlantic Station, interviews were con- Despite a clothing specification given to the temporary ducted on the shuttles operating between Atlantic Station and employment agencies, at two locations a few of the personnel the MARTA Art Center rail station for the same reason. Inter- were not attractively dressed and probably discouraged peo- views were also conducted inbound at a few locations to inter- ple from talking with the interviewers. In such a case, those cept walkers and bikers entering Atlantic Station's business dis- interviewers should be assigned to counting or sent home to trict from the adjacent residential portions of the development. change clothes.

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D-4 With as many as 40 temporary employees on a survey team, On-site management companies sometimes do not have a range of capabilities will exist. For a survey of this complex- information on occupied areas. That information is usually ity, at least three supervisors are needed to be able to both check maintained by the leasing offices, or agents, which are often and circulate to all sites. The most frequent supervision was separate offices or even handled by separate companies. In the needed to: case of Mockingbird Station, leasing was handled by the man- agement company for office space, by another office of the answer initial judgment questions related to interview management company for residential, and an outside com- responses (e.g., how to record trips to walk the dog); pany for retail and restaurant. The management company locate interviewers so they could intercept exiting patrons ultimately assembled information. from multiple doors; The diversity of ownership of Atlantic Station would have identify and separate interviewers talking with each other posed a similar situation for Atlantic Station. However, the instead of focusing on exiting patrons (a problem in low parking operator needed the same information for its own activity locations); surveys being conducted during a similar timeframe. Hence, schedule breaks and place "floaters" in those locations; the research team was able to obtain the development data deliver water to survey personnel near mid-shift time; and after the parking operator assembled the information. Both respond to cell phone calls for help (usually questions or development and occupancy data for Legacy Town Center approval to relocate to more active or convenient spot). had to be obtained from the applicable owner, management company, or leasing agent. Development Data Development Characteristics Lessons Learned Data describing the characteristics of the developments were MXDs may have separate ownerships in what seems like a acquired from the on-site management company for Mock- single development. Occupied space inventories are usually ingbird Station, from the parking operator on behalf of the maintained by the leasing (or sales) units, which may or may management companies for Atlantic Station, and from the var- not be parts of the ownership or on-site management orga- ious owners and management companies at Legacy Town nization(s). Ownership that is more diverse may lead to more Center. Because trip generation surveys need to be linked to diverse sources for the development and occupancy data. occupied development areas rather than total area, the research However, after permissions have been obtained to conduct team requested both total and occupied square footage or the survey, obtaining the development data becomes some- other development units, current at the time the surveys were what easy. However, it may take several follow-up calls to conducted. obtain a complete set of information.