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Service network design for an intermodal container network with flexible due dates/times and the possibility of using subcontracted transport


  • van Riessen, B.
  • Negenborn, R.R.
  • Dekker, R.
  • Lodewijks, G.


An intermodal container transportation network is being developed between Rotterdam and several inland terminals in North West Europe: the EUROPEAN GATEWAY SERVICES (EGS) network. This network is developed and operated by the seaports of EUROPE CONTAINER TERMINALS (ECT). To use this network cost-efficiently, a centralized planning of the container transportation is required, to be operated by the seaport. In this paper, a new mathematical model is proposed for the service network design. The model uses a combination of a path-based formulation and a minimum flow network formulation. It introduces two new features to the intermodal network-planning problem. Firstly, overdue deliveries are penalized instead of prohibited. Secondly, the model combines self-operated and subcontracted services. The service network design considers the network-planning problem at a tactical level: the optimal service schedule between the given network terminals is determined. The model considers self-operated or subcontracted barge and rail services as well as transport by truck. The model is used for the service network design of the EGS network. For this case, the benefit of using container transportation with multiple legs and intermediate transfers is studied. Also, a preliminary test of the influence of the new aspects of the model is done. The preliminary results indicate that the proposed model is suitable for the service network design in modern intermodal container transport networks. Also, the results suggest that a combined business model for the network transport and terminals is worth investigating further, as the transit costs can be reduced with lower transfer costs.

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  • van Riessen, B. & Negenborn, R.R. & Dekker, R. & Lodewijks, G., 2013. "Service network design for an intermodal container network with flexible due dates/times and the possibility of using subcontracted transport," Econometric Institute Research Papers EI2013-17, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus School of Economics (ESE), Econometric Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:ems:eureir:40343

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jansen, Benjamin & Swinkels, Pieter C. J. & Teeuwen, Geert J. A. & van Antwerpen de Fluiter, Babette & Fleuren, Hein A., 2004. "Operational planning of a large-scale multi-modal transportation system," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 156(1), pages 41-53, July.
    2. Crainic, Teodor G. & Rousseau, Jean-Marc, 1986. "Multicommodity, multimode freight transportation: A general modeling and algorithmic framework for the service network design problem," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 225-242, June.
    3. Ishfaq, Rafay & Sox, Charles R., 2012. "Design of intermodal logistics networks with hub delays," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 220(3), pages 629-641.
    4. Crainic, Teodor Gabriel & Laporte, Gilbert, 1997. "Planning models for freight transportation," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 97(3), pages 409-438, March.
    5. Ziliaskopoulos, Athanasios & Wardell, Whitney, 2000. "An intermodal optimum path algorithm for multimodal networks with dynamic arc travel times and switching delays," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 125(3), pages 486-502, September.
    6. Macharis, C. & Bontekoning, Y. M., 2004. "Opportunities for OR in intermodal freight transport research: A review," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 153(2), pages 400-416, March.
    7. Crainic, Teodor Gabriel, 2000. "Service network design in freight transportation," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 122(2), pages 272-288, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gharehgozli, A.H. & Roy, D. & de Koster, M.B.M., 2014. "Sea Container Terminals," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2014-009-LIS, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.

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    container transportation; intermodal planning; network optimization; ynchromodal planning;

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