Friday, November 24, 2006

Developing a Prototype Agent-Based Pedestrian Evacuation Model to Explore the Evacuation of King’s Cross St Pancras Underground Station

Here is a working paper, which is a modification of the one Christian presented at Agent 2006, entitled “Developing a Prototype Agent-Based Pedestrian Evacuation Model to Explore the Evacuation of King’s Cross St Pancras Underground Station.

London’s King’s Cross St. Pancras underground station has been the unfortunate location of two major incidents within the last twenty years. A fire in November 1987 and the terrorist bombing in July 2005 both resulted in the loss of lives, and the injury of many people. The implementation of measures to mitigate or neutralise the effect of all possible future incidents at this site is unrealistic. The adoption of preparedness measures is crucial for the emergency services to limit the loss of life and property, and to improve the response phase of an incident. King’s Cross St. Pancras underground station is currently being redeveloped, partly to mitigate the remaining few operational and safety issues identified after the 1987 fire, and also to allow for a predicted increase in passenger use. Despite these modifications and improvements, both the surrounding built environment and the station will necessarily remain complex structures. The local emergency services have several duties placed upon themselves in the event of a major incident at this site, and a computer based model capable of examining the effects of different incident assumptions or contingencies has been identified as potentially beneficial to the local National Health Service resilience planning department. The specific aim of this paper is to provide the reader with an overview of this research project. To begin, the aims and deliverables are identified. In light of these, principles of pedestrian evacuation modelling are presented, highlighting a shift in approaches: from aggregate movement, to individual-level movement and behavioural models. The feasibility of using a proprietary pedestrian evacuation model to achieve the research goal is discussed. This is followed by an agenda for developing an agent-based pedestrian evacuation model using the Repast toolkit. This paper concludes with progress of the prototype model to date.

Keywords: Pedestrian evacuation modelling, Agent-Based Modelling, Repast toolkit, London’s King’s Cross St. Pancras underground station.

The paper is available for download at the CASA website under working papers. Alternatively click here.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Social Science Applications utilising GIS at the CASA

The other day I was invited by the Scottish Executive Geographical Information Service (SEGIS) to give a keynote speech at their meeting entitled “Innovative Methods: The Role of GIS in Government Social Research.” The aim of the meeting was to demonstrate to social researchers within the Scottish Executive the opportunities that exist with GIS.

The talk I presented was based on a number of GIS research applications from CASA and was entitled "Social Science Applications utilising GIS at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis"

For those who are interested, a .pdf of the talk can be downloaded from here.

I would like to thank those at CASA that gave me some material for the talk.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Switching Servers

We just had to switch servers, We have tried to update all the links but if any of the links don’t work please let us know and we sort it out.