Framework and Guidelines for the Development of a Twin Cities Meso-DTA Model

Principal Investigator(s):

John Hourdos, Former Research Associate Professor, Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering

Project summary:

Large-scale, mesoscopic traffic simulation is a newly adopted tool due to recent advancements in traffic modeling as well as computer hardware. New studies show that modeling on a scale necessary to answer questions about complicated subjects--such as diversion patterns around multi-corridor work zones--is feasible. As with many research projects, the original objective of this project was adjusted to maximize the benefit from the final product. The initial objective was to create a framework and guidelines for the development of a Twin Cites mesoscopic, Dynamic Traffic Assignment (DTA) model. Discoveries during the course of the project as well as Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) priorities/urgent needs directed the project away from the development of guidelines and more toward the proof-of-concept and development of the foundation for such a metro-wide model. In addition, a parallel MnDOT project, undertaken by a consulting group using the DynusT application, developed an almost metro-wide model. The project described in this report changed its scope to treat this parallel project as a case study and identify its future utility beyond its immediate goals (which were to determine the most cost-effective construction phasing for several projects during the 2017-2020 construction seasons).

Project details:

  • Project number: 2015010
  • Start date: 07/2014
  • Project status: Completed
  • Research area: Transportation Safety and Traffic Flow
  • Topics: Data and modeling