Understanding road geometrics (3)

Sometimes adding colour can improve the understanding of technical information. Here are three examples:

Kassel, Germany

The city council’s website (here) gives details of the improvement of the Friedrich Ebert Strasse. The details include a cross-section (image below) as well as contact details, background information on the project, and some “artists impressions” of what it will look like when completed.

x-sections 21

Ottawa, Canada

Ottawa city council publishes its design and planning guidelines online (see here). The guidelines are worth a visit in themselves. The section on community streetscape guidelines (here) includes an image which combines a cross-section and a plan view, both illustrative and both in colour.

x-sections 22

Ireland,National cycle manual 2011 (Ref. 1116)

This detailed guideline (it has some 236 pages) includes some innovative quasi 3D graphics such as the one below. I find them particularly good at helping me understand what the guideline is suggesting.

x-sections 23


Highway design can be quite a complex technical subject. This can be as true for cross-section information as it can be for longitudinal information. Images can help engineers understand what a designer or a guideline is proposing. And better understanding contributes to better decision-making.


The sources for the Kassel and the Ottawa images are as given in the text above.

1116 – Ireland, National cycle manual, National Transport Authority 1116


About roadnotes

Robert Bartlett is an international consultant with over 30 years of professional experience as a highway and traffic engineer with leading companies and organisations in several countries, including Germany, China (Hong Kong), Qatar and the UK. Specialised in urban studies, transport and the use of GIS, research has included new ideas on subjects such as the study of social justice using GIS, the dimensions of vehicles, and comparative geometrics (highways and transport).
This entry was posted in comparative geometrics, general, highway design standards and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Understanding road geometrics (3)

  1. Atifah says:

    I just wonder, it is possible to verify the existing road geometrics?

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