Understanding the NYC pedestrian experience was the first step in the NYCDOT’s multi-million dollar Wayfinding Master Plan. Our neighborhood-based multi-lingual interviews and surveys provided a clear picture of how pedestrians navigated the city.

The New York City Department of Transportation wanted help developing a wayfinding program. The goal: improve the pedestrian experience in New York City by encouraging more people to walk, and help people find city destinations more easily. This research was a “stake in the ground,” a benchmark against which future assessments of pedestrian wayfinding will be compared after the Wayfinding Master Plan is implemented. Beresford Research designed the NYC DOT project to provide quantitative data and qualitative information about how people navigate in different NYC neighborhoods and the choices they make to find city destinations. We conducted street interviews in multiple NYC neighborhoods in order to provide the necessary data. Timing was critical and short. In addition to developing discussion guides, survey design, and analysis, we needed to generate results in two weeks.

Beresford Research assembled a team of interviewers, including Mandarin and Cantonese speakers, created a recognizable “brand” with custom-made NYC DOT lanyards and identification, and sourced an incentive – all geared to encourage busy New Yorkers and visitors to stop and talk. And they did. The 500+ interviews were completed in six days. From initial project conversations with the client to final presentation of findings, the project ran just over a month.


“Beresford Research was absolutely responsive to every requirement of our project. They are expert at what they do which ensured that we had the exact research we needed.”

David Gibson, Principal, Two Twelve-Graphic Design