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The Topological Evolution of Surface Transportation Networks

Author

Listed:
  • Feng Xie
  • David Levinson

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

Abstract

This study explores the topological evolution of surface transportation networks, using empirical evidence and a simulation model validated on that data. Evolution is an iterative process of interaction, investment, and disinvestment. The temporal change of topological attributes for the network is also evaluated using measures of connectivity, density, heterogeneity, and connection patterns. The simulation model is validated using historical data from the Indiana interurban network. Statistical analyses suggest that the simulation model performs well in predicting the sequence of link abandonment in the interurban network as well as the temporal change of topological attributes. The simulation model is then applied on different idealized network structures. Typical connection patterns such as rings, webs, hub-and-spokes, and cul-de-sac emerge in the networks; the spontaneous organization of network hierarchies, the temporal change of spacing between parallel links, and the rise-and-fall of places in terms of their relative importance are also observed, providing evidence for the claim that network topology is an emergent property of network dynamics.

Suggested Citation

  • Feng Xie & David Levinson, 2005. "The Topological Evolution of Surface Transportation Networks," Working Papers 200901, University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:nex:wpaper:topologicalevolution
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/11299/179983
    File Function: First version, 2007
    Download Restriction: no

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Ghaffari, H.O. & Sharifzadeh, M. & Young, R. Paul, 2013. "Complex aperture networks," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 392(4), pages 1028-1037.
    2. Lindsey, Robin, 2012. "Road pricing and investment," Economics of Transportation, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 49-63.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Networks; Transportation; Structure; Entropy; Pattern; Continuity; road network; evolution; topology; simulation;

    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
    • R42 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Government and Private Investment Analysis; Road Maintenance; Transportation Planning
    • R48 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Government Pricing and Policy
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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