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Traffic forecasts under uncertainty and capacity constraints

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  • Anna Matas

    ()
    (GEAP, Dpt. Economia Aplicada. Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)

  • Josep-Lluis Raymond

    ()
    (GEAP, Dpt. Economia i Història Econòmica. Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)

  • Adriana Ruiz

    (GEAP, Dpt. Economia Aplicada. Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)

Abstract

Traffic forecasts provide essential input for the appraisal of transport investment projects. However, according to recent empirical evidence, long-term predictions are subject to high levels of uncertainty. This paper quantifies uncertainty in traffic forecasts for the tolled motorway network in Spain. Uncertainty is quantified in the form of a confidence interval for the traffic forecast that includes both model uncertainty and input uncertainty. We apply a stochastic simulation process based on bootstrapping techniques. Furthermore, the paper proposes a new methodology to account for capacity constraints in long-term traffic forecasts. Specifically, we suggest a dynamic model in which the speed of adjustment is related to the ratio between the actual traffic flow and the maximum capacity of the motorway. This methodology is applied to a specific public policy that consists of suppressing the toll on a certain motorway section before the concession expires.

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File URL: http://www.pcb.ub.es/xreap/aplicacio/fitxers/XREAP2009-12.pdf
File Function: First version, 2009
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File URL: http://www.pcb.ub.es/xreap/aplicacio/fitxers/XREAP2009-12.pdf
File Function: Revised version, 2009
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Xarxa de Referència en Economia Aplicada (XREAP) in its series Working Papers with number XREAP2009-12.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2009
Date of revision: Nov 2009
Handle: RePEc:xrp:wpaper:xreap2009-12

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Postal: Espai de Recerca en Economia, Facultat de Ciències Econòmiques i Empresarials, Universitat de Barcelona, c/ Tinent Coronel Valenzuela, 1-11, 08034 Barcelona
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Web page: http://www.pcb.ub.edu/xreap
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  1. Geoff Riddington, 2006. "Long Range Air Traffic Forecasts for the UK: A Critique," Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, London School of Economics and University of Bath, vol. 40(2), pages 297-314, May.
  2. Robert Bain, 2009. "Error and optimism bias in toll road traffic forecasts," Transportation, Springer, vol. 36(5), pages 469-482, September.
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