A Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP) involves pick-up/delivery tours generating on a network or its subsets in order to meet nodes, given a set of constraints and the need to optimize one or several fixed objectives. Network at postal services is represented as a graph on which nodes stand for customers, point of service, depot, sorting facilities while arcs stand for real links (i.e. road, rail and air services). Hence each arc has a traversing time and cost while time window and demand are associated factors to the nodes. This dynamic problem could get more sophisticated if several heterogeneous or homogenous fleets are involved at several periods. This paper presents the results from of a practical application conducted on a subset of network for a target group of customers in the Greater Toronto Region (GTA) network. The rest of this paper will describes different approaches to metaheuristics method covered in literature followed by a nobble ACO method applied for GTA case and finally concludes the paper with remarks and an insight to future works.
The transportation system in general and the supply chain in particular is vitally important to the economy and the quality of life. A supply chain in any country has vulnerabilities and is subject to risk of disruption. In Canada, factors such as long distances, geographical diversity, geological and geotechnical characteristics of some regions, weather extremes, and long-term climate change-induced factors pose challenges, in addition to other factors such as labour disruptions. This paper describes nature-induced vulnerabilities in the Asia-Pacific Gateway Corridor (APGC) freight supply chain and defines resilience measures that could mitigate adverse effects on stakeholders. Supply chains are introduced for containerized commodities and coal, which is moved as a bulk commodity. Vulnerabilities are identified and characterized on the basis of historical evidence and scientific analysis. Finally, the need for inherent and dynamic resilience is noted. Due to space constraints, the analysis of vulnerabilities focuses on containerized imports.
The Commercial Vehicle Survey (CVS) has been one of Ministry of Transportation Ontario’s (MTO) main instruments for obtaining information about freight vehicle flows on the provincial transportation system. The CVS is a roadside survey that intercepts truck trips at data collection sites to gather information about inter-city truck flows as well as some urban truck flows. The survey is conducted every 5 years, and the most recent available data were collected in the period from 2010 to 2014, and is referred to as the 2012 CVS. During the survey, the intercepted truck drivers were interviewed to collect information about vehicle type, trip movement, and cargo contents. The 2012 CVS encompasses over 200 data collection sites and a total of 45,000 interviews (Ministry of Transportation Ontario, 2015). While the CVS is an extensive data collection effort, the sample collected through CVS is still a small portion of the entire truck population that flows through Ontario. A new source of data is also becoming accessible to the MTO. Probe GPS tracking data from fleet management providers such as Shaw and ATRI have a greater geographic coverage of truck movement than intercept surveys, resulting in better representation of the truck population. It is estimated that GPS data cover as much as 50% of total vehicle kilometers travelled by trucks (Ministry of Transportation Ontario, 2015). However, the GPS tracking data are collected automatically by a device on the truck without any interaction from the driver, and the device lacks intelligence to collect data with more complexity such as cargo content. In summary, the CVS contains highly detailed information about truck flows at the points of intercept but lacks population coverage, while GPS tracking data provide a wider coverage of truck movements but lack useful supplementary information about the tour. The purpose of this study is to apply data fusion methods (D'Orazio, Di Zio, & Scanu, 2006) to integrate these two data sets to produce a more useful combined source of information for modelling and policy analysis. The GPS data and the CVS data complement each other nicely in theory, but in practice the two sources of data have different levels of aggregation, sample methods, and statistical precision, all of which are common problems of data fusion (Polak, 2006). While challenges exist, the merits of data fusion are notable. First, it avoids the costly option of conducting an entirely new survey when the variables of interest exist in multiple previous surveys (Van Der Puttan, Kok, & Gupta, 2002). Second, it provides a means to analyze variables from different surveys within one platform (Bayart, Bonnel, & Morency, 2008). Third, it provides an approach to address the lack of comparability between data when a mix of survey methodologies are used (Bayart, Bonnel, & Morency, 2008).
This paper identified two types of bias, industry and distance, found in a sample of GPS derived truck trips. A method was established to remove the industry bias using trip rates and expanding by the population of firms in a given zone. In addition, distance bias was accounted for by utilizing the IPF method to match total estimated zonal production and attraction (from the first expansion) while maintaining the origin-destination patterns obtained from the 2006 CVS survey created by MTO. A second expansion was then applied by optimizing the expanded GPS totals with the truck totals from survey station points located along major Ontario routes. The total trip productions and attractions generated from the analysis provided a better representation of truck trips in Ontario compared to the original sample while closely matching the aggregate totals observed on the road network. However, the microscopic behaviour of individual trips is lost at an aggregate level. To retain the travel behaviour of vehicles, we plan to utilize the original sample to synthesize a full population of trips by using methods such as combinatorial optimization (Ryan et al., 2009). In such a case, the synthesis algorithm can be used to ensure that the aggregate zonal totals by industry type are maintained. Such a method has been applied before for expanded trip rates. For example, Goulias et al. (2014) used population synthesis to expand a household survey in California. After the trips are synthesized, our data can then be used in microscopic transportation models (such as truck tours) without the biases inherent in the original GPS sample.
This paper examines the adoption rates of advanced technologies by the Canadian transportation sector and its industries against the average rate across all surveyed industries. After presenting the adoption rates of the most widely adopted technologies, the paper compares transportation with 7 other sectors of the Canadian economy. Next, attention shifts to the objectives that transportation enterprises set by adopting advanced technology, as well as the obstacles that were faced, and what measures they took to overcome them. The paper concludes by pointing to future advanced technologies, such as electric vehicles, autonomous transportation, Smart Cities, and others, which are poised to impact the transportation sector. And this impact will create new challenges and opportunities for transportation enterprises.
After several years of negotiation, Canada and the European Union have come to a final agreement on the Comprehensive and Economic Trade Agreement (CETA) and the text is currently going through ratification process. The paper seeks to highlight some possible CETA’s consequences for domestic Canadian shipping markets. It uses industrial economics analytical tools drawn from a Structure-Conduct- Performance (SCP) paradigm. From a literature review, it reconstructs four cases of past coastal shipping deregulation that occurred internationally: Philippine, Greece, Taiwan and New Zealand. The observed transformations are then characterized in terms of the SCP lens. The approach does not claim to forecast market transformations in Canada’s coastal trade but to underline some common trends reported in different coastal shipping markets after a deregulation process.
Freight movement is a major process contributing to economic growth and prosperity. It is a fairly dynamic process due to the rapid changes arising from complex supply chain structures, logistics and technological advancements. The rapid changes and growth in commercial vehicle movements in recent years have led to a surge of studies that focus on understanding the processes giving rise to these movements. To date, little has been done to study and model vehicle ownership of business establishments. However, the number of owned commercial vehicles is a significant factor that explains the number of generated commercial trips (Madar, 2014). The lack of studies on the topic is believed to be due to the absence of detailed commercial vehicle data. This paper addresses the problem of data scarcity by employing synthetic population techniques to microsimulate the number of commercial vehicles owned by all individual business establishments that engage in delivering goods or services in the Windsor Census Metropolitan Area (CMA). The case presented here uses the combinatorial optimization technique (CO) to synthesize the number of commercial vehicles owned by business establishments that engage in commercial travel activities (i.e. delivering goods or services).
Freight outsourcing decisions influence freight system dynamics. In this paper we tried to answer some basic questions related to outsourcing such as: what influences outsourcing, how the economy affects outsourcing, what influences the decision of international outsourcing, and whether innovation and technological advancements are significant to outsourcing. We present models of outsourcing of goods production and logistics. The models consider the effect of firm characteristics and strategic focus, industry related variables, economic conditions, location characteristics, and advances in innovation and technology on outsourcing. Generally, when a firm is focused on the core competency of their production, they are more likely to outsource their freight related activities. This can be explained by the positive sign of the effect of employment size, economic indicator, and the use of advanced technologies in the production process on outsourcing decisions. The models are to be used in a microsimulation platform for the purpose of agent-based firm micro-modelling.
From the perspective of a manufacturer-distributor (MD) such as Procter & Gamble, who manufactures a variety of products (item types) and who employs its own fleet of trucks to convey freight to its Distribution Centre (DC) from where individual orders are paddled to the retailers (R1, R2 etc.), what is the best consolidation and dispatch policy, and under which conditions? We aim to shed light on these practical questions from a dynamic modeling approach. In this research, we introduce Dynamic Multi-Item Shipment Consolidation (DMISCL). Being a better representation of logistics industry practices, DMISCL arises when the orders (package, or less-than truckload (LTL) shipments) come for varying types of product, and it requires the decisions of continuing to consolidate a load (hold), versus shipping it now (dispatch) to be made at the arrival time of each order. DMISCL is a better representation of industrial practices.
This paper analyzes a high-speed electric train running inside an evacuated tunnel that is powered by solar panels mounted above the tunnel that continuously produce 137 kW of average power per km of track. This train will be totally weather-proof and consume much less power than today’s high speed trains, so that surplus solar electricity from the solar panels can be profitably sold to the grid. A preliminary economic analysis indicates that this 500 km/h solar-powered vactrain can be profitable at a ticket price of 0.29 to 0.40 U.S dollars per km per passenger so that it will be cheaper than air travel.
Sections 113 – 116 (the “LOS Provisions”) of the Canada Transportation Act (the “Act”) set out a federal railway company’s level of service (“LOS”) obligations. These are commonly referred to as the common carrier obligations. They require rail carriers to provide “adequate and suitable accommodation” for shippers’ traffic. The LOS Provisions were not sufficient to prevent shippers from experiencing regular rail carrier service failures in the period leading up to 2007, following which the Government of Canada appointed the federal Rail Freight Service Review panel. The panel’s report recommended, and in 2013 the Government ultimately adopted, amendments to the Act that granted shippers a right to a service level agreement (“SLA”), failing which the shipper might refer the matter to arbitration to establish the terms of a SLA. During the winter of 2013-14, rail service deteriorated substantially. Many shippers remain dissatisfied with rail service levels and many express frustration at their inability to do anything about it.
Over the course of the past two decades since the privatization of CN in 1995, and the further economic deregulation in 1996, each of CP and CN has seen their operating ratios improve by some 30%. This paper will examine how these impressive improvements were achieved – the changes to the networks, operations, freight rates, commodity mix, and labour, and their contributions to the improvement.
Transportation has played an important role in the political and economic development of Canada. The completion of the Canadian Pacific Railway to the Pacific Ocean is perhaps the best known example of this nation building role. Today, the railway industry continues to play an essential economic role by shipping many types of goods across the country. It was the legislative reforms of 1987 however, that defined a more market-driven approach for the industry, helping to transform Canada’s mainline railways from domestic incumbents into leading continental competitors. This paper traces this transformation of Canada’s railway industry by examining selected operating and financial performance measures over a twenty five year period following the 1987 legislative changes. It begins by providing a context, identifying the rationale for regulatory reforms that emerged in the early 1980s in anticipation of enhanced trade and from pressures south of the border. In the second section, the paper examines the Canadian railway industry’s performance from 1988 to 2013 and the contribution of the short line or regional rail industry.
Recent research on port service delivery for the American Association of Port Authorities aimed at developing a standard instrument (SEAPORT–Seaport Effectiveness Assessment for PORT managers) that can accurately and reliably measure how well ports deliver services to their users. The study population was customers and users of container ports in the U.S. and Canada—cargo owners, freight forwarders, shipping lines and supply chain partners at the port. Designed as a standalone measurement tool, results from the SEAPORT instrument can be used to assess the effectiveness of service delivery. When placed in context with fluidity measurements by Transport Canada and the berth productivity measurement by the Journal of Commerce (JoC), this instrument would provide a holistic view of Canadian port performance for container movements. This short paper draws heavily on several research papers already published as well as forthcoming research for the Canada Transportation Act Review (CTAR) Panel, to focus on understanding what service delivery assessment research is needed in order to balance the many ways of spending funds in the port sector, both by the port and by government.
The aim of this research is to study the implications of the topographical changes in the Arctic and how this affects the northern shipping passages (NSP), this will also include all the historical countries involved by bordering this territory. It is said that, due to climate change and global warming, the Arctic Ocean is undergoing some significant topographical changes. There increasingly less ice, and this is opening up new opportunities for shipping routes. It has been proposed by Kefferpütz (2010) that, before the end of the twenty first century, the temperatures in the Arctic are expected to increase from four to seven degrees Celsius (p. 1). The earlier models predicted that the Arctic could be ice free by the summer of 2030. Evidence showed that in 2008 there was a 65 percent decrease in Arctic ice. The greatest decrease in the summer Arctic ice caps on record was from 2007 to 2009. Although, there is not a 100 percent accurate date as to when the Arctic will be free of ice, Canada and other Northern countries should begin to strategize how to utilize the new Arctic passages that will becoming available. This could involve setting up new shipping routes, navigational aids, ports, and developing new equipment to deal with icy conditions. Not only does the Arctic offer new shipping routes, but also, 13 percent of the world’s oil reserves and 30 percent of the world natural gas resources are said to be in the Arctic. Therefore, the objective of this paper is to compile information on the relevance of the fast approaching prospect the Artic has to offer. Decisions need to be made on ownership of territory and the paper shows recent territorial disputes and developments. The prospects of sovereignty is outlined, which involves what individual countries are doing to maintain sovereignty or develop ownership over the NSP. Also, what sort of interests does the marine shipping companies have in reducing their travel distance, through the use of the NSP, this includes the cost and lead time delivery savings that the NSP can offer. Finally, the technology and equipment development considers what investments are required to make the regular use of NSP possible (Kefferpütz, 2010).
Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) has proven advantages as a transportation fuel. However in the United States the use of this abundant product as a transportation fuel is limited by the number of liquefaction plants and the undeveloped supply chains that can distribute the product. One potential option for the distribution of LNG is by shipping it in containers either by truck, rail or aboard a vessel. Japan has operated a containerized LNG rail truck intermodal distribution systems since 2000. The results of field research in 2015 on the rail truck containerized intermodal system are given. An analysis is made of the operational characteristics, equipment and safety protocols used in Japan. An evaluation of the applicability of the Japanese LNG container model to the United States rail/truck intermodal container network is presented.
Transportation plays an instrumental role across the economy as a cost that must be incurred to complete almost any market transaction. As Winston (2013) asserts, transportation is so intertwined with almost every part of the economy that it is vital for government to continually assess system performance and to consider improvements. As a trade-reliant nation with its population spread over a vast landscape, Canada is particularly dependent on a transportation system that is efficient, reliable, innovative, responsive to change, and resilient to disruptions. However, it is evident that high quality statistical information is required to assess the national transportation system and its ability to move both people and goods. A Freight Analysis Framework (FAF) is a method for estimating commodity origin and destination flows by mode over a network or system. While conventional, industry-based surveys of transportation provide data to meet national accounting needs, a FAF requires activity-based surveys to estimate commodity flows. This study begins by reviewing a possible Canadian FAF as well as the associated data considerations, such as geography and commodity detail. Then, it assesses the coverage of existing surface transportation surveys to estimate freight flows. By adding an assessment of rail coverage, this represents an extension of a previous work that assessed trucking coverage (Madar & McKeown, 2015).
Bill C-52, the Fair Rail Freight Service Act, gives a shipper the right to request a service level agreement (SLA) from its federal railway service provider and establishes an arbitration process in the event the shipper and the railway company cannot agree on the terms of an SLA. Bill C-52 came into force in June 2012. Bill C-30, the Fair Rail for Grain Farmers Act, allows the government to establish weekly minimum volumes of grain to be moved by CN and CP and provides penalties for railway companies in the event of their failure to move the minimum volumes. It also provides the Canadian Transportation Agency (the Agency) with the authority to extend the interswitching distances and to specify what matters can be subject to SLA arbitrations. Bill C-30 came into force in May 2013. This paper reviews and discusses the factual context in which both Bills were enacted and their consistency with the principles of the NTP enunciated in the Canada Transportation Act.
The cloud that now surrounds the silver lining of jet airplanes is the smoke from their contrails. As the 21st century progresses, burning fossil fuels with abandon is coming to an end. This paper offers a definition of a sustainable transport system while outlining the need, presents information on jet airplane Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions and mitigation. This is followed by highlighting transport airships that could replace the most polluting older passenger jetliners that have been converted to cargo carriage. The paper concludes with some thoughts on the impact of transport airships in international trade.
Certain months of the year, days of week and hours of day combine to create sharp peaks at Canada’s top airports. In 2014, the most crowded single day to fly was on Friday, August 15th when more than 183,600 passengers departed Canada’s top eight airports, a 30% spike from the annual daily average. During the 2014 Christmas season, Friday December 19th was the busiest day with 171,400 passengers departing from the top airports. On an average Friday, about 1 of 5 passengers (19.3%) departed between 4:00 and 7:00 p.m. Conversely, the least crowed time to depart from these top airports was between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m., on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday, during November into early December and then again during late January and into February. Since the 1987 reforms of the passenger airline industry, carriers are competing on fares, striving to operate efficiently by achieving higher load factors. At the same time, they must also try to shift passenger and aircraft traffic from peak into off-peak periods. Dynamic pricing represents a strategy to encourage this shift by essentially considering the price elasticity of demand in setting fares. This can be frustrating at an individual level, since passengers can end up paying different prices for essentially the same service. From a social welfare perspective however, it represents an efficient market solution. And a principle underlying the 1987 regulatory reforms is that market forces are the best means for providing Canadians with efficient transportation at the lowest cost.