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Estimating Highway Preconstruction Services Costs. Volume 2: Research Report

Sun, 07/08/2018 - 20:27
This report presents guidance for state departments of transportation (DOTs) and other agencies for estimating pre-construction services (PCS) costs for transportation project development. PCS refers to a varied assortment of project-specific engineering and other professional services required before construction begins on a bridge, highway, or other transportation project, whether provided by agency staff or consultants. The guidance—a guidebook (Volume 1) and supporting research report (Volume 2)—addresses principal sources and components of PCS costs, PCS estimating methodologies, trends (such as changes in design and construction technology, design standards, program requirements, and professional workforce) likely to affect PCS costs, and advice on agency policies and practices that can help control program risk through improved PCS cost estimation. This volume specifically documents the development, testing, validation, and packaging of an accurate, consistent, and reliable method for estimating PCS costs.

Estimating Highway Preconstruction Services Costs. Volume 1: Guidebook

Sun, 07/08/2018 - 20:22
This report presents guidance for state departments of transportation (DOTs) and other agencies for estimating pre-construction services (PCS) costs for transportation project development. PCS refers to a varied assortment of project-specific engineering and other professional services required before construction begins on a bridge, highway, or other transportation project, whether provided by agency staff or consultants. The guidance—a guidebook (Volume 1) and supporting research report (Volume 2)—addresses principal sources and components of PCS costs, PCS estimating methodologies, trends (such as changes in design and construction technology, design standards, program requirements, and professional workforce) likely to affect PCS costs, and advice on agency policies and practices that can help control program risk through improved PCS cost estimation.

Freight Systems, Volume 1

Sun, 07/08/2018 - 20:01
Transportation Research Record 2547 contains the following papers: Characterization of International Origin–Destination Truck Movements Across Two Major U.S.–Canadian Border Crossings (Gingerich,K, Maoh,H, and Anderson,W);

Pavement Management, Volume 1

Sun, 07/08/2018 - 19:21
Transportation Research Record 2589 contains the following papers: Informing Roadway Sustainability Practices by Using Greenroads Certified Project Data (Lew,JB, Anderson,JL, and Muench,ST);

Managing Performance and Assets; Freight Data and Visualization

Sun, 07/08/2018 - 18:09
Transportation Research Record 2596 contains the following papers: Choosing Optimal Reliability Measures for Passenger Railways: Different Measures for Different Purposes (Karathodorou,N and Condry,B);

Minimizing Roadway Embankment Damage from Flooding

Sun, 07/08/2018 - 17:28
This state-of-the-practice report highlights how the transportation community is protecting roadways and mitigating damage from inundation and overtopping. In the absence of standard guidance, this report highlights major issues and design components specific to roadway embankment damage from flooding. It documents the mechanics of damage to the embankment and pavement, and the analysis tools available. The probable failure mechanisms are identified and various design approaches and repair countermeasures are highlighted. The information presented in the synthesis is based on a review of the related literature, a survey of current practice, and a series of telephone interviews with state departments of transportation. Examples of failures and repair techniques are illustrated through 14 case examples gathered from six states. The findings suggest that minimizing damage to roadway embankments can be tackled by altering the embankment design and slope protection techniques or altering the stream course, or both. The success of an approach is site-dependent because an approach that serves its intended design purpose at one site does not necessarily work at another site. To arrive at an adequate design, the following factors should be considered: hydrologic and hydraulic factors, geological and geotechnical factors, legal and funding aspects, and risk. Ideally, it is the combination of the probability of failure and the value of the consequence or risk that can most effectively guide the decision.

Developing a Decision Support System for Transit Prioritization in Kelowna

Fri, 06/08/2018 - 20:24
The Transit Analytics System is a bottom-up approach to assess the level of service offered by the existing transit network and to find opportunities for service expansion, optimization, or even reduction. By quantifying the market potential for transit, it is intended to help prioritize service in areas with the greatest opportunity for sustainable modal shift and reduction in carbon emissions. Building on a disaggregated land use database developed from BC Assessment Data, Canada Business Points, and surveys of major employers and institutions, the system combines information from census, household travel surveys, customer surveys, passenger counts, as well as future development proposals to assess the potential market for transit. Network analysis is performed in GIS to quantify the amount of activity (potential market) within walking distance of individual bus stops or along corridors to prioritize investments in transit or pedestrian infrastructure according to multiple criteria. The overall result of the Transit Analytics System is a decision support system, built on a comprehensive database which forms the basis of transit investment prioritization and the development of a future vision for sustainable transportation. This method offers a number of advantages for municipal governments. It is designed with the resource constraints and data availability of medium-sized cities in mind. Much of the process is automated with Python scripts, allowing for it to be used by individuals without advanced training in GIS to rapidly assess multiple alternatives in near real-time.

Car, Bus, Bike, or Walk... What are the Drivers of Model Choice Decisions in Kelowna?

Fri, 06/08/2018 - 19:06
Discrete mode choice models are usually established for major urban areas with complex transportation systems and not often used for smaller auto-oriented communities, mainly because of lack of appropriate behavioural data and dominant auto mode choice. Unlike many regions of the same size, the Sustainable Transportation Partnership of the Central Okanagan (STPCO) has a regional demand forecasting model and rich trip diary database. However, the current mode choice model has potential to be improved and further analysis to the data can provide more insights about the reasons behind modal choice decisions in smaller communities. In this study, two discrete mode choice models are developed to understand passengers’ preferences and mode choices for work and non-work trips in the City of Kelowna. Data comes from the 2013 Okanagan Travel Survey, the most recent household-based trip diary survey that was conducted in fall 2013 and covered a sample of residents of the Central Okanagan and the City of Vernon. The dataset includes information on the trip (e.g. trip purpose, mode, time, length, etc.) and the trip maker (e.g. age, gender, income, etc.). The developed models provided insights into trip makers’ choices and the tradeoffs they make among different attributes when choosing a mode of travel. In light of the developed models, recommendations are made to support effective transportation planning policies and prioritization of transportation investments in the city.

Towards an Agent-based Approach to Integrated Transit-Land Use PLannig for Small and Rural Communities (SRC) - Presentation

Fri, 06/08/2018 - 18:29
Given the needs for a practical transit route design approach and a learning-based mode shift model, the main objectives of this research are: --Developing a modelling framework which can generate optimal transit route designs that maximize demand attraction (Design Tool). --Considering modal shift barriers in terms of a threshold or inertia against shifting between modes (Evaluation Component).

Next Generation Road Cross Sections for All Ages and Abilities - Presentation

Fri, 06/08/2018 - 18:02
EXISTING CROSS SECTION ISSUES 1. Excessive focus on vehicular capacity (not safety) 2. Context insensitive 3. Inadequate accommodation of pedestrians & cyclists of all ages & abilities NEXT GENERATION

Dixie Road Reconfiguration: Enhance the Safety and Comfort for All Road Users - A Collaborative effort with the community and stakeholders

Fri, 06/08/2018 - 17:44
Peel Region is one of Ontario’s fastest growing regions, with population of over 1.3 million people and forecasted growth to reach 1.8 million people by 2031. Employment is expected to keep pace with population growth with employment forecasted to grow from 734,000 jobs in 2014 to 880,000 jobs by 2031. Recognizing the increase in population and jobs that comes with an expanded economy and the reality of constrained land area, the transportation system can only accommodate future travel by ensuring more people use sustainable modes of transportation such as transit, walking and cycling. Supports for the implementation of a bikeway on Dixie Road are well recognized in many Regional and City planning documents. A comprehensive approach has been undertaken to bring planning policy to implementation for the Region’s first-ever buffered bike lanes with road reconfiguration that incorporates an urban streets approach to improve the safety and comfort for all road users. This includes completing a feasibility study, bringing stakeholders together to build consensus on a design plan, engaging the community, and leveraging on major infrastructure projects for implementation. The recommended design is a lane reconfiguration on Dixie Road from a four lanes arterial road to a two lanes road, centre left turn lanes, and buffered bike lanes to provide a complete streets approach. The project will be monitored to see the effectiveness of implementation.

Improving the Airport Customer Experience

Tue, 05/08/2018 - 20:13
This guidebook documents notable and emerging practices in airport customer service management that increase customer satisfaction, recognizing the different types of customers (e.g., passengers, meeters and greeters, employees) and types and sizes of airports. It also identifies what airports can do to further improve the customer experience. This guidebook will provide airport staff, specifically customer service managers and others with responsibilities for managing and improving the customer experience, with comprehensive resources of management practices and understanding of current trends, information sources on customer service improvements, and practical tools that can be used for implementing a customer service improvement program. The guidebook provides key drivers of customer satisfaction, including the top positive and negative influences for the customer experience; methods to engage airport stakeholders to improve customer satisfaction “from roadway to runway,” including the use of innovative technologies; a template to implement a strategy for a customer satisfaction improvement program for a variety of types and sizes of airports, including staffing and budget considerations; and guidance to develop performance indicators to measure customer satisfaction.

Risk Shifting as Use of Market Power: Transportation of Dangerous Goods

Sun, 05/06/2018 - 19:09
Risks associated with the transportation by rail of dangerous goods, particularly petroleum products and Toxic Inhalation Hazard (“TIH”) commodities, have received significant attention following the tragic incident at Lac-Mégantic and subsequent incidents. Even before Mégantic, rail carriers had already exercised their market power to shift certain of those risks to those unable to avoid it. In this paper, we identify some commercial manifestations of that market power, many of which apply in the context of the transportation of dangerous goods, while others apply more generally.

From Free Markets to Regulation and Back Again: Cycles in Transportation, Grain Marketing, and Economic Thought

Sun, 05/06/2018 - 18:33
In 1881, in Bonfield, Ontario, the first spike was driven in the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Sir John A. Macdonald immediately predicted that “the CPR can go on its own way for its own interests, and in the long run, the interests of the CPR and those of the Dominion are identical.” CPR President William van Horne, however, expressed a different view when he defined the company’s interest for a U.S. Senate committee. The railway, he said, “was built for the purpose of making money for shareholders and for no other purpose under the sun.” Macdonald’s statement was clearly political. Van Horne’s might be classified as either a fond hope, a PR gambit, or something of a delusion. As historian Gerry Friesen observed: “The CPR was both a privately held, profit oriented corporation and a state enterprise … and when its board of directors, or the Canadian people, ignore the inconvenient half of the dualism, they merely open themselves to greater irritation” (Friesen, 177). Friesen’s comment applies to more than the CPR; most transportation enterprises are partly commercial and partly a public service, and this same dualism runs through the history of grain marketing. Moreover, although we do not recognise it so often, it also runs through economic thought and public policy about free enterprise in general. This paper will trace the way this dualism has manifested itself in both transportation and grain policy in Canada through a very long cycle from free markets to regulation and back, and how this cycle reflects parallel developments in economic theory, public opinion, and government policies, in both Canada and abroad. It ends with some reflections on what might be learned from these remarkable fluctuations in outlook.

Canada-United States Freight Rail Economic Regulation Comparison

Sun, 05/06/2018 - 18:31
This paper summarizes an extensive and detailed report, prepared for the Railway Association of Canada, with the purpose to characterize and compare the economic regulation of freight rail transportation in Canada and the U.S. More specifically, the purpose was to: describe the similarities and differences in the respective Statements of National Transportation Policy that underpin the regulation; describe the similarities and differences in the specific provisions relating to freight rail economic regulation in the two countries; and determine whether these comparisons suggest possible useful opportunities for change in how freight rail services are regulated in Canada. The matters covered here, and in the full report, include: the scope of the regulation; the National Transportation Policy statement; market entry and exit; level of services; pricing of services; competitive access; mediation and arbitration; cost of capital and revenue adequacy; and our conclusions.

MEPDG Traffic Loading Defaults Derived from Traffic Pooled Fund Study

Sun, 05/06/2018 - 15:47
As part of traffic loading inputs, the Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Design Guide (MEPDG), Interim Edition: A Manual of Practice requires detailed axle loading information in the form of normalized axle load spectra (NALS), number of axle per truck class and axle group types, and axle spacing inputs. These data are obtained from weigh-in-motion (WIM) sites. The objective of this project was to evaluate the applicability of the existing MEPDG global traffic loading defaults and to use research-quality WIM data from the Long-Term Pavement Performance (LTPP) Specific Pavement Studies (SPS) Traffic Data Collection pooled fund study to revise and improve the global default axle loading values. This report provides an assessment of the original MEPDG axle loading defaults, describes WIM data selection criteria, including data reliability assessment, presents findings from the LTPP SPS traffic pooled fund study traffic data review, describes a methodology to generate new MEPDG traffic loading defaults, and provides a description of the new traffic loading defaults and recommendations for their use. The report also discusses a sensitivity analysis of MEPDG pavement performance models to NALS. Significant differences found in the MEPDG outcomes support the need for axle loading characterization beyond a simple default value for heavy trucks that dominate vehicle class distributions, especially for class 9 trucks. The effect of WIM accuracy on axle weight measurements, NALS estimates, and the associated MEPDG outcomes was also investigated. It was found that drift in WIM system calibration leading to over 5 percent bias in mean error between true and WIM-measured axle weight could lead to significant differences in MEPDG design outcomes. In addition, two new statistical parameters were developed in this study: (1) a summary statistic used to describe traffic loads for comparison and grouping of similar NALS called the relative pavement performance impact factor and (2) a parameter used to quantify errors associated with NALS and to assess NALS reliability called the pooled weighted load error.

Recommended Design Guidelines to Accommodate Pedestrians and Bicyclists at Interchanges

Fri, 04/06/2018 - 15:54
This report was developed in response to widespread interest in improved interchange design guidance to better accommodate pedestrians and bicyclists with respect to safety and accessibility. In developing the recommended guidelines, a wide range of alternative designs were considered. Ultimately, it was decided that the preferred apporaches presented include only those alternatives that are fully compliant with national design standards included in the Federal Highway Administration's Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.

A New Train of Thought: The Dynamics and Inherent Politics of Rail Freight Transportation in Canada

Tue, 03/06/2018 - 21:10
The purpose of this paper is to summarize the origins, status and results of key railway regulatory and service changes and to suggest future priorities. It includes a retrospective analysis of railway regulatory changes and sector performance in Canada over the past seven decades and of critical performance improvements. These improvements, coupled with and supported by government policy changes, enabled new rail sector growth and provided important context for another section of this paper – a forward-looking discussion on “what next?” - for the rail industry in Canada, from both a public and private sector perspective. While progress has been made, the paper identifies a number of issues and challenges which may impact negatively on the rail sector’s future potential growth and hinder continued expansion of new trade opportunities and service improvements for shippers.

Assessing the GHG Emissions Effects of the Canada Line in Vancouver and Tramway T2 in Paris

Tue, 03/06/2018 - 20:34
Today, the Earth’s human population is growing and urbanization is spreading across the globe (Kacyira, 2012). With this growing urban development, residential areas are expanding out beyond urban cores in cities like Paris and Vancouver (Stan, 2013). Consequently, suburban residents often travel farther from their homes to their workplace than those who live in the city. These trips generate greenhouse gas emissions, particularly when people have to use cars; hence the need to develop public transportation linking these peri-urban areas with workplaces, to mitigate the climate impacts from urban traffic. In this paper, we compare two recent additions to urban public transportation networks in different countries to assess their potential in reducing GHG emissions. The selected rapid transit corridors are the Canada Line in Vancouver and Tramway T2 in Paris.

The Decarbonisation of Transport Logistics: A South African Case

Tue, 03/06/2018 - 20:08
South Africa ranks 13th globally on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions contributions and is one of the top 10 carbon-intensive major economies in the world (GDP larger than $200 billion), with a carbon intensity of 0.972 metric tons of CO2 per $1000 of GDP in 2011 (compared to leading countries such as Germany at 0.290 tCO2 per $1000 of GDP) (U.S. Energy Information Administration, 2013). During the 2009 Copenhagen climate change negotiations, South Africa pledged to reduce domestic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 34% by 2020 and 42% by 2025 (National Treasury, 2010). The transport sector (freight and passenger) was responsible for 9.3% of South Africa's total cumulative GHG emissions between 2000 and 2010, with road transport (freight and passenger) contributing 92% of transport sector emissions (Department of Environmental Affairs, 2013). Transport decarbonisation will therefore be an important contributor to national decarbonisation efforts. McKinnon et al. (2014) identified external factors that will impact on company-level efforts to cut freight logistics-related carbon emissions, and classified these into 6 categories using the acronym TIMBER - technology, infrastructure, market changes, behaviour, energy and regulation. This paper applies the TIMBER framework to assess transport decarbonisation activities in South Africa.