IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/transa/v39y2005i7-9p792-812.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Speed-flow relations and cost functions for congested traffic: Theory and empirical analysis

Author

Listed:
  • Verhoef, Erik T.

Abstract

A dynamic 'car-following' extension of the conventional economic model of traffic congestion is presented, which predicts the average cost function for trips in stationary states to be significantly different from the conventional average cost function derived from the speed-flow function. When applied to a homogeneous road, the model reproduces the same stationary state equilibria as the conventional model, including the hypercongested ones. However, stability analysis shows that the latter are dynamically unstable. The average cost function for stationary state traffic coincides with the conventional function for non-hypercongested traffic, but rises vertically at the road's capacity due to queuing, instead of bending backwards. When extending the model to include an upstream road segment, it predicts that such queuing will occur under hypercongested conditions, while the general shape of the average cost function for full trips does not change, implying that hypercongestion will not occur on the downstream road segment. These qualitative predictions are verified empirically using traffic data from a Dutch bottleneck. Finally, it is shown that reduced-form average cost functions, that relate the sum of average travel cost and average schedule delay costs to the number of users in a dynamic equilibrium, certainly need not have the intuitive convex shape, but may very well be concave - despite the fact that the underlying speed-flow function may be convex.

Suggested Citation

  • Verhoef, Erik T., 2005. "Speed-flow relations and cost functions for congested traffic: Theory and empirical analysis," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 39(7-9), pages 792-812.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:transa:v:39:y:2005:i:7-9:p:792-812
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0965-8564(05)00049-2
    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 below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Verhoef, Erik T., 2001. "An Integrated Dynamic Model of Road Traffic Congestion Based on Simple Car-Following Theory: Exploring Hypercongestion," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 505-542, May.
    2. Hiroshi Ohta, 2001. "Probing A Traffic Congestion Controversy: Density and Flow Scrutinized," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(4), pages 659-680.
    3. Mun, Se-il, 1999. "Peak-Load Pricing of a Bottleneck with Traffic Jam," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 323-349, November.
    4. Vickrey, William S, 1969. "Congestion Theory and Transport Investment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(2), pages 251-260, May.
    5. Verhoef, Erik T., 2003. "Inside the queue:: hypercongestion and road pricing in a continuous time-continuous place model of traffic congestion," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 531-565, November.
    6. Hiroshi Ohta, 2001. "Probing a Traffic Congestion Controversy: Response to Comment," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(4), pages 695-699.
    7. Evans, Alan W, 1992. "Road Congestion: The Diagrammatic Analysis: Comment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 211-217, February.
    8. De Meza, David & Gould, J R, 1987. "Free Access versus Private Property in a Resource: Income Distributions Compared," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(6), pages 1317-1325, December.
    9. F. H. Knight, 1924. "Some Fallacies in the Interpretation of Social Cost," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(4), pages 582-606.
    10. Erik T. Verhoef, 2001. "Probing A Traffic Congestion Controversy: A Comment," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(4), pages 681-694.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Arnott, Richard & Inci, Eren, 2010. "The stability of downtown parking and traffic congestion," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 260-276, November.
    2. Holguín-Veras, José, 2011. "Urban delivery industry response to cordon pricing, time-distance pricing, and carrier-receiver policies in competitive markets," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 45(8), pages 802-824, October.
    3. Holgui­n-Veras, Jose & Cetin, Mecit & Xia, Shuwen, 2006. "A comparative analysis of US toll policy," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 40(10), pages 852-871, December.
    4. Tsekeris, Theodore & Geroliminis, Nikolas, 2013. "City size, network structure and traffic congestion," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 1-14.
    5. repec:eee:transb:v:105:y:2017:i:c:p:297-314 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Holgun-Veras, Jos & Cetin, Mecit, 2009. "Optimal tolls for multi-class traffic: Analytical formulations and policy implications," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 43(4), pages 445-467, May.
    7. Button, Kenneth, 2004. "1. The Rationale For Road Pricing: Standard Theory And Latest Advances," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 3-25, January.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • R41 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Transportation: Demand, Supply, and Congestion; Travel Time; Safety and Accidents; Transportation Noise
    • R48 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Government Pricing and Policy
    • D62 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Externalities

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:transa:v:39:y:2005:i:7-9:p:792-812. 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). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/547/description#description .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.