Schneider, Robert

(414) 977-7740
Arch & Urban Planning 249


Dr. Robert Schneider is a Professor with more than 20 years of practical and research experience in the sustainable transportation field. He teaches Planning Policy Analysis, Applied Projects in Urban GIS, and Pedestrian and Bicycle Transportation. He contributes to international, national, and local research projects on safety, travel behavior, demand analysis, and data collection for active transportation modes.

Robert has led more than 30 peer-reviewed journal articles related to pedestrian and bicycle transportation, and he has won paper awards from the Transportation Research Board Pedestrian Committee in 2001 and 2012, the World Society of Transport and Land Use in 2014, and the Transportation Research Board Bicycle Committee in 2021.

Robert’s safety research has identified roadways with the highest concentrations of pedestrian fatalities across the US, summarized US pedestrian fatality trends over four decades, and produced a new method of classifying pedestrian and bicycle crashes. He is currently analyzing pedestrian safety at night as a part of a National Cooperative Highway Research project team. His pedestrian fatality hot spots study was one of two academic articles cited in the US Department of Transportation’s National Roadway Safety Strategy. Robert’s research has been featured in Streetsblog USA, Planetizen, and the Washington Post.

Robert’s travel behavior research produced the Theory of Routine Mode Choice Decisions, a framework to explain how people choose between pedestrian, bicycle, transit, and automobile modes. He has quantified walking, bicycling, and transit trips produced by different types of land uses and produced statistical models to estimate how many pedestrians cross specific intersections and how many neighborhood workers commute by different types of transportation. He has assessed satisfaction with a variety of types of transportation, including walking, bicycling, riding the bus, and taking microtransit.

Locally, Robert is co-PI of the National Science Foundation FlexRide Milwaukee project, a pilot application of microtransit service connecting central city workers with suburban jobs. He has led Wisconsin Department of Transportation projects to analyze statewide pedestrian and bicycle crash trends, evaluate driver yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks, and quantify pedestrian and bicyclist risk at multi-use trail roadway crossings and intersections. He and his student teams have surveyed residents and analyzed safety for Milwaukee Safe and Healthy Streets and the award-winning Milwaukee Pedestrian Plan. Robert is a core team member of Milwaukee Safe and Healthy Streets and has collaborated on research and client projects with multiple organizations, including the City of Milwaukee Department of Public Works and Department of City Development, Coalition for Safe Driving MKE, Villard Avenue Business Improvement District, Neighborhood House of Milwaukee, Medical College of Wisconsin, and UW-Milwaukee Office of Sustainability.

Between 2001 and 2007, Robert worked for Toole Design Group, LLC, assisting with pedestrian and bicycle planning projects in communities such as Washington, DC, Rockville, MD, Alexandria, VA, Greensboro, NC, and Seattle, WA. Robert served as Chair of the Transportation Research Board Committee on Pedestrians from 2014 to 2020, providing national and international leadership to bridge the academic and professional community. He was named Research Professional of the Year in 2019 by the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals.

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University of California, Berkeley, Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning, 2011
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Master of Regional Planning, 2001
Augustana College, Rock Island, Illinois, Bachelor of Arts, 1999

Research Focus

Pedestrian and Bicycle Planning, Design, and Safety
Travel Behavior and the Built Environment
Sustainable Transportation Policy
Transportation Standards and Analysis Methods
Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methods


URBPLAN 772 – Pedestrian and Bicycle Transportation
URBPLAN 793 – Applied Projects in Urban Geographic Information Systems
URBPLAN 810 – Planning Policy Analysis

Selected Work

Strategies to Improve Pedestrian Safety at Night, 2021-present (for National Cooperative Highway Research Program through Toole Design Group, LLC)

Milwaukee Comprehensive Crash Analysis, 2021-2022 (for City of Milwaukee through Toole Design Group, LLC)

Gender Analysis Tool for Complete Streets Policy Implementation, 2020-2021 (for University of Wisconsin-Madison, Center for Transportation Equity Decisions & Dollars)

UW-Milwaukee Campus Transportation Survey, 2020 (for UW-Milwaukee Office of Sustainability)

Pedestrian Exposure Data for the Wisconsin State Highway System: WisDOT Southeast Region Pilot Study, 2019-2021 (for Wisconsin Department of Transportation)

Safe & Healthy Streets: Enhancing Systems to Increase Walking & Biking Infrastructure in Milwaukee, 2018-2021 (for Wisconsin Bicycle Federation and Medical College of Wisconsin)

Gender Analysis and Global Learning for Safe and Healthy Streets: Implementing a Complete Streets Policy in Milwaukee, WI, 2019-2020 (for UW-Madison Department of Urban Planning and Landscape Architecture and UW-Madison Global Health Institute)

City of Milwaukee Pedestrian Master Plan, 2017-2018 (for Toole Design Group and Milwaukee Department of Public Works)

UW-Milwaukee Campus Transportation Survey, 2017 (for UW-Milwaukee Office of Sustainability)

High-Visibility Enforcement Evaluation, 2016 (for Wisconsin Department of Transportation through UW-Madison Traffic Operations and Safety Laboratory)

Systemic Pedestrian Safety Analyses, 2016 (for National Cooperative Highway Research Program through UNC Highway Safety Research Center)

Models to Estimate Pedestrian and Bicycle Commuting at the Neighborhood Level, 2016 (for University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, Research and Creative Activities Support Grant)

Biking for Health: Testing the Benefits of a Bicycle Intervention in a Low-Income Community, 2015 (for Clinical & Translational Science Institute of Southeast Wisconsin through Medical College of Wisconsin)

Wisconsin Statewide Pedestrian and Bicycle Crash Analysis, 2015 (for Wisconsin Department of Transportation)

Methods and Technologies for Collecting Pedestrian and Bicycle Volume Data, 2014 (for National Cooperative Highway Research Program through Kittelson Associates, Inc.)

Pedestrian and Bicycle Transportation Along Existing Roads, 2014 (for National Cooperative Highway Research Program through Toole Design Group, LLC)

California Smart Growth Trip Generation Rates Study, 2013 (for the California Department of Transportation through UC Davis)

Improving the Representation of the Pedestrian Environment in Travel Demand Models, 2013 (for Portland Metro and Oregon Transportation Research and Education Consortium through Portland State University)

Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Strategies for UC Berkeley Campus and Periphery: Recommendations for Implementation, 2012 (for University of California Berkeley through UC Berkeley Safe Transportation Research & Education Center)

Pedestrian and Bicycle Data Collection in United States Communities: Quantifying Use, Surveying Users, and Documenting Facility Extent, 2005 (for Federal Highway Administration through Toole Design Group, LLC)