3D GIS BASED EVALUATION OF THE AVAILABLE SIGHT DISTANCE TO ASSESS SAFETY OF URBAN ROADS
Keywords: 3D Sight Analysis, Sight Distance, Road Safety, Mobile Mapping, Digital Terrain Model, Sight Obstruction, Low-Cost Sensors, GNSS/IMU
Abstract. The available sight distance (ASD) in front of the driver to detect possible conflicts with unexpected obstacles is fundamental for traffic safety. In the last 20 years, road design software (RDS) has been continuously updated with dedicated modules to estimate ASD, thus assessing the quality of project from a safety point of view. Unfortunately, the evaluation of ASD still represents an issue in the case of existing road, and the object of discussion in the research community. To avoid problems related to the limitation associated with the use of digital terrain models typically employed in RDS, the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software can use digital surface models (DSM) which are more flexible in the modelling of sight obstruction due to vegetation, street furniture, and vertical surfaces largely diffused in urbanized areas.
The paper deals with the evaluation of GIS in the estimation of ASD in a typical urban road where the density of sight obstruction along the roadside is relatively high. The work explores the case study of a collector road in the city of Turin (Italy). Results confirm the potentiality of GIS software in capturing the complex morphology of the urban environment, thus confirming that GIS could become an important analysis tool for road engineers in the field of road safety. The investigation here described is part of the Pro-VISION Project (funded in 2014 by the Regione Piemonte, Italy).