Pedestrians get stressed when they are routed through unexpected areas by existing mobile mapping applications which account for traffic jams, tolls, and hills—but not safety.
This project aims to improve the pedestrian experience with a web-based mobile mapping tool that helps users make informed decisions about which route to walk. We hope to support people walking through unfamiliar neighborhoods by providing a combination of time-sensitive data about safety, an easy way to define their own safety preferences, and the ability to navigate a route “hands free.” While we want to help all walkers make confident decisions on-the-go, we’re particularly interested in the unique challenges faced by female pedestrians.
It’s important to note that we are not developing a “safety algorithm.” Safety is an incredibly contextual concept that deserves to be tailored and personalized. Unlike socially tone-deaf applications that have been criticized for helping users simply avoid areas, we want to develop a tool where people can explore data based on their own idea of what safety means to them.
By letting users explore positive data beyond standard crime statistics, we want to provide a more balanced, socially conscious tool for data-driven discussions about safety. We hope StreetSavvy will challenge negative neighborhood stereotypes as much as it will help people get home in one piece.