IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Models and algorithms to improve earthwork operations in road design using mixed integer linear programming

Listed author(s):
  • Hare, Warren L.
  • Koch, Valentin R.
  • Lucet, Yves
Registered author(s):

    In road construction, earthwork operations account for about 25% of the construction costs. Existing linear programming models for earthwork optimization are designed to minimize the hauling costs and to balance the earth across the construction site. However, these models do not consider the removal of physical blocks that may influence the earthwork process. As such, current models may result in inaccurate estimates of optimal earthwork costs, leading to poor choices in road design. In this research, we extend the classical linear program model of earthwork operations to a mixed integer linear program model that accounts for blocks. We examine the economic impact of incorporating blocks via mixed integer linear programming, and find significant savings for most road designs in our test-set. However, the resulting model is considerably harder to solve than the original linear program. Based on structural observations, we introduce a set of algorithms that theoretically reduce the solving time of the model. We confirm this reduction in solve time with numerical experiments.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Journal of Operational Research.

    Volume (Year): 215 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 2 (December)
    Pages: 470-480

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:215:y:2011:i:2:p:470-480
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    in new window

    1. Kim, Eungcheol & Jha, Manoj K. & Son, Bongsoo, 2005. "Improving the computational efficiency of highway alignment optimization models through a stepwise genetic algorithms approach," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 339-360, May.
    2. Henderson, Darrall & Vaughan, Diane E. & Jacobson, Sheldon H. & Wakefield, Ron R. & Sewell, Edward C., 2003. "Solving the shortest route cut and fill problem using simulated annealing," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 145(1), pages 72-84, February.
    3. Moreb, Ahmad A., 1996. "Linear programming model for finding optimal roadway grades that minimize earthwork cost," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 93(1), pages 148-154, August.
    4. Francisco Ag├╝era & Fernando Aguilar & Manuel Aguilar & Fernando Carvajal, 2007. "Minimising the Earthwork Cost in the Construction of Irrigation Offstream Reservoirs," Water Resources Management: An International Journal, Published for the European Water Resources Association (EWRA), Springer;European Water Resources Association (EWRA), vol. 21(2), pages 375-397, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:215:y:2011:i:2:p:470-480. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.