Eil Kwon, Ramesh Kota, Michael Coyle, Sejun Song, Panos Michalopoulos
This report summarizes the final results of the research effort to develop a freeway traffic simulator with the capability to evaluate freeway operational strategies, such as traffic-responsive ramp metering and high-occupancy vehicles (HOV) lanes.
Researchers first developed an efficient software data structure by adopting a dynamic memory allocation scheme to use the available memory as efficiently as possible. That work also included modifying the existing macroscopic, segment-based modeling structure and developing new types of pipeline segments to facilitate detection modeling and further model enhancements. Based on the new segment-based modeling structure, researchers developed a new simulation module to handle HOV lane traffic flows and extended the simulation procedure for an exclusive HOV lane to handle a network of freeways.
Further, the simulation model also incorporates a new module to emulate the traffic-responsive ramp metering algorithm
implemented by the Traffic Management Center since the 1980s. The new software structure developed in this research allows
the future addition of new metering algorithms without major difficulties. To facilitate the data input process for the expanded simulation features, a new Windows-based user interface was developed using the Delphi software development tool kit. With the new user interface, most of the data input process can be done without exiting the main menu screen.
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