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A Model of the Rise and Fall of Roads

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  • Lei Zhang
  • David Levinson

    ()
    (Nexus (Networks, Economics, and Urban Systems) Research Group, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Minnesota)

Abstract

Transportation network planning decisions made at one point of time can have profound impacts in the future. However, transportation networks are usually assumed tobe static in models of land use. A better understanding of the natural growth pattern of roads will provide valuable guidance to planners who try to shape the future network. This paper analyzes the relationships between network supply and travel demand, and describes a road development and degeneration mechanism microscopically at the linklevel. A simulation model of transportation network dynamics is developed, involving iterative evolution of travel demand patterns, network revenue policies, cost estimation,and investment rules. The model is applied to a real-world congesting network – the Twin Cities transportation network which comprises nearly 8,000 nodes and more than 20,000 links, using network data collected since year 1978. Four experiments are carried out with different initial conditions and constraints, the results from which allow us toexplore model properties such as computational feasibility, qualitative implications, potential calibration procedures, and predictive value. The hypothesis that roadhierarchies are emergent properties of transportation networks is confirmed, and the underlying reasons discovered. Spatial distribution of capacity, traffic flow, andcongestion in the transportation network is tracked over time. Potential improvements to the model in particular and future research directions in transportation network dynamicsin general are also discussed.

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File URL: http://nexus.umn.edu/Papers/RiseAndFallOfRoads.pdf
File Function: First version, 2007
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group in its series Working Papers with number 000057.

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Date of creation: 2004
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Publication status: Published in working paper
Handle: RePEc:nex:wpaper:riseandfallofroads

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Web page: http://nexus.umn.edu
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Keywords: Transportation network dynamics; Urban planning; Road suppl;

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