We win!

27 Nov 2018

Victoria Walks' work in standing up for older pedestrians has been awarded the Institute of Transportation Engineers (Australia and NZ) Sustainable Transport Award 2018.

Founded in 1930, the Institute of Transportation Engineers is an international educational and scientific association of transportation professionals. The award was presented at the ITEANZ Presidents Dinner on 13 November 2018.

Victoria Walks’ research and advocacy for older pedestrians began with the study ‘Senior Victorians and walking: obstacles and opportunities’, undertaken in partnership with the Council on the Ageing, and conducted by Dr Jan Garrard. It involved a literature review, analysis of existing walking data, focus groups and a survey of 1128 seniors.

In the research on seniors, 39% said that sharing paths with cyclists was a moderate or major constraint to their walking. Victoria Walks subsequently developed Shared paths – the issues, a comprehensive report that included a literature review and stakeholder consultation with subject experts, VicRoads and 18 local councils. This was then summarised in a position statement, Shared paths – finding solutions.

In 2015 Victoria Walks, with the support of VicHealth, commissioned the Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) to fill the gap in knowledge around falls in the street environment. The resulting report Fall-related Injuries While Walking in Victoria lifted the lid on the hidden road toll - more than 5,000 Victorians each year present to hospital as a result of falls in the street.

Safer Road Design for Older Pedestrians identifies ways to provide safer street environments for pedestrians 65 years or older.  The report included assessment of 1,149 older pedestrian crashes and involved collaboration with the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV). Funding was provided by a Community Road Safety Grant from the Transport Accident Commission (TAC).

This research and policy work has underpinned Victoria Walks ongoing advocacy, including extensive media coverage; presentations to numerous conferences in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Brazil and Colombia; and policy work with agencies like VicRoads.

For more information on this work and its impact, have a look at our award nomination.