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Modeling phase changes of road networks

  • Arthur Huang
  • David Levinson

    ()

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

Adopting an agent-based approach, this paper explores the topological evolution of road networks from a microscopic perspective. We assume a decentralized decision-making mechanism where roads are built by self-interested land parcel owners. By building roads, parcel owners hope to increase their parcelsÕ accessibility and economic value. The simulation model is performed on a grid-like land use layer with a downtown in the center, whose structure is similar to the early form of many Midwestern and Western (US) cities. The topological attributes for the networks are evaluated by multiple centrality measures such as degree centrality, closeness centrality, and betweenness centrality. Our findings disclose that the growth of road network experiences an evolutionary process where tree-like structure first emerges around the centered parcel before the network pushes outward to the periphery. In addition, road network topology undergoes obvious phase changes as the economic values of parcels vary. The results demonstrate that even without a centralized authority, road networks have the property of self-organization and evolution; furthermore, the rise-and-fall of places in terms of their economic/social values may considerably impact road network topology.

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File URL: http://nexus.umn.edu/Papers/PhaseChanges.pdf
File Function: first version, 2009
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group in its series Working Papers with number 000061.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:nex:wpaper:phasechanges
Contact details of provider: Postal: Dept. of Civil Engineering, 500 Pillsbury Drive SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455
Phone: +01 (612) 625-6354
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Web page: http://nexus.umn.edu

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  1. David Levinson & Bhanu Yerra, 2006. "Self Organization of Surface Transportation Networks," Working Papers 200603, University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group.
  2. Yang, Hai, 1998. "Multiple equilibrium behaviors and advanced traveler information systems with endogenous market penetration," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 205-218, April.
  3. Gert Sabidussi, 1966. "The centrality index of a graph," Psychometrika, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 581-603, December.
  4. Bhanu Yerra & David Levinson, 2005. "The Emergence of Hierarchy in Transportation Networks," Working Papers 200507, University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group.
  5. David Levinson & Ajay Kumar, 1995. "A Multi-modal Trip Distribution Model," Working Papers 199503, University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group.
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