Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Civil Engineering


Transportation Engineering

Committee Chair

Stephanie S Ivey

Committee Member

Marian C Levy

Committee Member

Brian A Waldron


The transportation of goods over land, water and through the air plays an important role in the economies of cities but also imparts significant impacts on surrounding neighborhood livability. The neighborhoods that form around and support these freight hubs and thoroughfares are studied in the areas of health, safety, air quality and livability. Based on the current literature, a robust definition of what qualifies as a freight-centric neighborhood remains tenuous and a framework for delineating a freight-centric neighborhood does not exist. Without a standard way of defining the physical boundaries of these neighborhoods, quantitatively assessing the range of potential effects associated with residing in them becomes problematic. This is commonly due to the use of aggregated geographic units that fit poorly with the actual boundaries of such neighborhoods. Following an extensive literature review of livability, freight externalities and neighborhood delineation, a framework is presented to assist in developing freight-centric neighborhood boundaries based on the extent of freight externalities. Next, steps are provided for the creation and analysis of freight influence on households within those boundaries. The framework relies on thresholds and areas of extent attributed to current externality and impact research. The framework is applied to the area of Shelby County, Tennessee, and an analysis is performed to determine which freight source impacts the greatest area and number of households. In the analysis for Shelby County, rail traffic influences the greatest number of people of any freight mode. An analysis of existing survey data also shows that the perceived livability of those residing in freight-centric neighborhoods significantly decreases in areas with more that two sources of freight traffic.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.