Crowd Dynamics, Management and Control at Tourist Attractions during Special Events: A Case Study at Souq Waqif Using Pedestride® Crowd Simulation Tool
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"Large crowds can be expected at famous tourist attractions, e.g., Souq Waqif, during special events such as the FIFA World Cup 2022. A comprehensive understanding of crowd dynamics is extremely important in order to ensure safety of crowds and efficiency of crowd flows at large gathering spots. Pedestrian crowd simulation tools can be used to evaluate crowd flows and to verify crowd management and control strategies at public infrastructure. The objective of this study is to evaluate safety and efficiency of crowd flows at Souq Waqif, both under normal and emergency situations using Pedestride® Crowd Simulation tool developed at Melbourne University. This simulation model has been calibrated and validated using empirical data collected through controlled experiments and real-world observations. By simulating the increased visitor demand at Souq Waqif as a case study, we aim to highlight any required design modifications and to recommend and verify crowd management strategies in order to mitigate any unfavorable situations, such as stampede during any emergency. The study shows that at increased demands and during emergency evacuation, crowds tend to take similar route. Further, increased demands could elevate the maximum crowd density up to 6 p/m2 at gates and junctions. In order to mitigate such unfavorable situations, dynamic exit signs are needed to direct flows to other clear exits to avoid herding effect."
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