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Evaluation of Traffic Flow Analysis and Road User Cost Tools Applied to Work Zones

Evaluation of Traffic Flow Analysis and Road User Cost Tools Applied to Work Zones Prepared by: Jacqueline Jenkins and Deborah McAvoy Prepared for: The Ohio Department of Transportation, Office of Statewide
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Evaluation of Traffic Flow Analysis and Road User Cost Tools Applied to Work Zones Prepared by: Jacqueline Jenkins and Deborah McAvoy Prepared for: The Ohio Department of Transportation, Office of Statewide Planning & Research State Job Number September 2015 Final Report Technical Report Documentation Page 1. Report No. 2. Government Accession No. 3. Recipient's Catalog No. FHWA/OH-2015/29 4. Title and Subtitle 5. Report Date Evaluation of Traffic Flow Analysis and Road User Cost Tools Applied to Work Zones September Performing Organization Code 7. Author(s) 8. Performing Organization Report No. Jacqueline Jenkins and Deborah McAvoy 9. Performing Organization Name and Address 10. Work Unit No. (TRAIS) Cleveland State University 2121 Euclid Avenue Cleveland, Ohio, Contract or Grant No. SJN Sponsoring Agency Name and Address 13. Type of Report and Period Covered Ohio Department of Transportation 1980 West Broad Street Columbus, Ohio Sponsoring Agency Code 15. Supplementary Notes 16. Abstract Historically, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) has used QUEWZ to estimate road capacities for proposed lane closures which fall outside of the Permitted Lane Closure Map, as per Policy No (P). The resulting capacity is included in the process for predicting queue lengths outlined in Section of ODOT s Traffic Engineering Manual. QUEWZ is also identified in ODOT s Innovative Contracting Manual to estimate the capacities for calculating road user costs. The current problem is that QUEWZ is not compatible with current versions of Windows and no longer supported by the developer. Therefore, ODOT needs a replacement for QUEWZ. A new queue analysis tool was developed to meet the needs of the ODOT District Work Zone Traffic Managers for conducting queue length analyses. It is based on the 2010 Highway Capacity Manual capacity formulation for short term work zones and estimates the size and length of the queue and the associated delay for up to 24, 1 hour time intervals. A new road user cost tool was also developed, which calculates the travel costs, operating costs and crash costs of roadway construction projects, suitable for establishing monetary incentives for innovative contracting methods. These tools replace the use of QUEWZ and two existing ODOT spreadsheets. 17. Keywords 18. Distribution Statement Work zone, lane closure, capacity analysis, queue analysis, queue length, queue delay, travel costs, operating costs, crash costs, road user costs No restrictions. This document is available to the public through the National Technical Information Service, Springfield, Virginia Security Classification (of this report) 20. Security Classification (of this page) 21. No. of Pages 22. Price Unclassified Unclassified 89 Form DOT F (8-72) Reproduction of completed pages authorized Evaluation of Traffic Flow Analysis and Road User Cost Tools Applied to Work Zones Prepared by: Jacqueline Jenkins, PhD, PEng Cleveland State University 2121 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio, Deborah McAvoy, PhD, PE, PTOE Ohio Research Institute for Transportation and the Environment (ORITE) Ohio University, 141 Stocker Center, Athens, Ohio, September 2015 Prepared in cooperation with the Ohio Department of Transportation and the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s) who is (are) responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Ohio Department of Transportation or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Acknowledgments Reynaldo Stargell, Emily Willis, Duane Soisson, the ODOT District Work Zone Traffic Managers, and other ODOT personnel provided technical assistance and input during this project. Various ODOT personnel and contractors helped identify potential data collection sites, issued work permits, and assisted the researchers in the field. Students from Cleveland State University and Ohio University assisted with the data collection, analysis, and the development of the new tools. Thank you for your contributions. v TABLE OF CONTENTS Page INTRODUCTION... 1 Queue Analysis... 1 Road User Costs... 2 Problem Statement... 2 Research Objectives... 3 GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF THE RESEARCH... 4 Literature Review... 4 Software Review... 4 Develop User Specifications... 5 State Survey... 5 Select Tool Components... 6 Develop Upgrade/Enhancement Data Collection... 8 Calibration and Validation... 8 QUEUE ANALYSIS TOOL USER MANUAL... 9 Queue Analysis Tool... 9 Project Information Traffic Volume Data Pre-lane Closure Condition Lane Closure Condition Queue Information Deterministic Queue Analysis Calibration and Validation Observed Capacities Comparison between Ohio and HCM Capacities Previously Reported Capacities ROAD USER COSTS Literature Review Road User Cost Tool User Manual RUC Input Form RUC Output Details vi Input Options CPI Data Crash Cost Data Sensitivity Analysis RECOMMENDATIONS FOR IMPLEMENTATION Updates Improvements REFERENCES APPENDICES A. Data Collection Methodology B. Data Collection Results: FAI/LIC IR 70 PID C. Data Collection Results: FRA IR PID D. Data Collection Results: ALL PID E. Data Collection Results: CUY IR PID F. Data Collection Results: ATB IR PID G. Data Collection Results: D12 PPM FY2014 Concrete PID vii LIST OF FIGURES Figure 1. Queue analysis tool Figure 2. Project information block Figure 3. Traffic volume data block Figure 4. AADT sheet for hourly and directional distributions Figure 5. Pre-lane closure condition block Figure 6. Lane closure condition block Figure 7. Queue information block Figure 8. Deterministic queue analysis block Figure 9. Comparison between Ohio and Texas capacities Page LIST OF TABLES Table 1. Speed adjustment values (mph) for right-side lateral clearance Table 2. Capacity (vph) across work activity and lane configuration Table 3. Intensity across work acitivity Table 4. Summary of work zone characteristics Table 5. Observed hourly volumes Table 6. Summary of capacity values reported in the literature Table 7. Summary of data collected at FAI/LIC IR 70 PID Table 8. Summary of data collected at FRA IR PID Table 9. Summary of data collected at ALL PID Table 10. Summary of data collected at CUY IR PID Table 11. Summary of data collected at ATB IR PID Table 12. Summary of data collected at D12 PPM FY2014 Concrete PID Page viii INTRODUCTION The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) is committed to minimizing the impact of construction and maintenance on the traveling public and the movement of goods. As such, Policy No (P) outlines the responsibilities and processes for traffic management in work zones. Each District is responsible for analyzing the impacts of planned projects, analyzing proposed lane closures, developing traffic management plans, and coordinating and monitoring projects. In addition, ODOT s Innovative Contracting Manual describes various innovative contracting methods for use on construction projects. Monetary incentives and/or disincentives, which are based in part on the assessment of road user costs, are used to improve contractor performance and thus reduce the inconvenience and delays to traffic. For this research project, the thread which connects Policy No (P) and the Innovative Contracting Manual is the application of the Queue and User Cost Evaluation of Work Zones (QUEWZ) program. This program was developed by the Texas Transportation Institute to calculate the capacity of work zones with lane closures, lengths of queues based on hourly traffic demand, and associated road user delay costs. This program is currently used by ODOT to calculate capacity, which is then used in two separate spreadsheets developed by ODOT to estimate queueing and road user costs. Queue Analysis ODOT maintains a Permitted Lane Closure Map (PLCM), also referred to as a Permitted Lane Closure Schedule (PLCS) that defines the allowable time(s) that lane(s) may be closed on freeways and expressways. The PLCM is established by determining when the hourly volumes are expected to be less than the theoretic capacities for the freeway segments. The hourly volumes are derived from Automatic Traffic Recorder (ATR) or Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT) data. The theoretic capacities are calculated using Equation 10-9 of the 2010 Highway Capacity Manual however the work zone intensity and work zone ramp factors are assumed to be zero. When a proposed lane closure violates the PLCM, an exception may be permitted based on the results of a queue length study. The queuing thresholds set forth in Policy No (P) are as follows: Queues less than 0.75 miles are acceptable; Queues greater than 0.75 miles but less than 1.5 miles are acceptable if they do not exceed two hours; and Queues longer than 1.5 miles and queues between 0.75 and 1.5 miles lasting for more than two hours are unacceptable. Section of ODOT s Traffic Engineering Manual (TEM) outlines the process for predicting the queue length on freeways. The process involves using the QUEWZ program to calculate the expected capacity through the work zone and then applying the calculated capacity to a spreadsheet developed by ODOT to calculate the potential queue length. 1 Road User Costs ODOT s Innovative Contracting Manual describes nine innovative contracting methods which may be applied to minimize construction time and delay to the traveling public and movement of goods. A procedure is provided to select qualifying projects for which at least one of the innovative contracting methods is applicable. The calculation of the road user delay cost is valuable for assessing projects, and determining incentive and disincentive amounts for the following innovative contract methods: Incentive/disincentive contract which rewards work done ahead of schedule and penalizes overruns; Lump sum minus incentive contract which provides a lump sum incentive for ontime completion of the project with deductions for overruns; A + B bidding contract which specifies a fixed dollar amount for all work to be done plus the disincentive value for the total number of workdays the bidder is proposing for the contract; A + B bidding with multiple section contract which specifies a fixed dollar incentive for each time period the identified critical work is completed ahead of schedule and deductions for overruns; Lane value contract which applies a disincentive each time a critical lane or ramp is restricted; and Unauthorized lane use contract which applies a disincentive each time a lane is closed into a non-permitted time or section of roadway. Procedures for calculating the road user costs are included in the Innovative Contracting Manual. Separate procedures are provided for projects with: a) no lanes closed; b) with lane(s) closed; and c) detour. These procedures include the use of QUEWZ and/or a spreadsheet developed by ODOT. Problem Statement The problem identified by ODOT was that the DOS based program QUEWZ is not compatible with current versions of Windows and no longer supported by the developer. Therefore, ODOT needs a replacement for the QUEWZ program. In the Request for Proposal, ODOT stated that they were not interested in developing new software or reprogramming QUEWZ, nor were they interested in adopting existing complicated or complex software. Instead, ODOT was interested in replacing their use of QUEWZ and the current Ohio queue analysis spreadsheet tool, with an existing work zone specific, sketch planning or deterministic analysis tool for evaluating the queuing of planned lane closures at work zones. ODOT was also interested in improving their current road user cost tool to include more comprehensive elements. In addition, ODOT desired the tools be reflective of Ohio conditions. Given that the use of QUEWZ is specified in the Traffic Engineering Manual and the Innovative Contracting Manual, the replacement of QUEWZ will require the two documents to be updated. 2 Research Objectives The goal of this research project was to establish reliable, user friendly procedures for predicting queues as a result of proposed lane closures and calculating the road user costs associated with roadway construction, maintenance and rehabilitation projects. The procedures would replace ODOT s current use of the QUEWZ program, ODOT s Queue Calculation Worksheet for Freeway Work Zones spreadsheet and ODOT s Work Zone User Cost Calculations spreadsheet.. 3 GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF THE RESEARCH To achieve the primary goal of this research project, the following tasks were conducted: Task 1 Literature review and software review Task 2 Develop user specifications Task 3 Survey of state transportation agencies Task 4 Select tool Task 5 Develop upgrade/enhancement Task 6 Data collection Task 7 Calibration and validation As the work progressed, ODOT decided that a new queue analysis tool was preferred over adopting an existing tool. Therefore, Task 4 was revisited and instead of selecting a specific existing tool, desirable components from the various tools were selected for inclusion into a new queue analysis tool. This report details the development of two new tools: a new queue analysis tool; and a new road user cost tool. Both were developed in Microsoft Excel and each incorporates the 2010 Highway Capacity Manual (HCM) methodology for calculating freeway capacity. Literature Review For the development of the queue analysis tool, a portion of the literature review focused on studies which reported observed capacities under various lane reduction configurations, and the impact of various factors including the intensity and type of work activity, traffic composition, presence of entrance ramps, lane width, built environment (i.e. urban versus rural) and natural environment (i.e. daytime versus nighttime, and weather). The results are incorporated in the Queue Analysis Tool User Manual as guidance for choosing appropriate variable values. For the development of the road user cost tool, another portion of the literature review focused on the economic value of time and studies which quantified the road user costs of lane closures and lane shifts. A summary of the key findings are included in the Road User Cost Tool User Manual. Software Review A preliminary review of various work zone analysis tools was conducted including CA4PRS, Construction Congestion Cost (CO 3 ), DYNASMART-P, FREEVAL-WZ, FREQ, Highway Capacity Software (HCS), Highway Economical Requirements System (HERS-ST), IDAS, Life-Cycle Cost Analysis RealCost, MicroBENCOST, NetZone, PEMS, Quadro, QUEWZ, and QuickZone, Simtraffic, Synchro, TRAFFIX, VISSIM, WZTA, BCA.Net. The characteristics of the different software were used to develop a survey to establish the user specifications for the new tools. 4 Develop User Specifications The results of the preliminary software review were used to develop a questionnaire to establish the needs of ODOT District Work Zone Traffic Managers (DWZTM). The questionnaire asked about: The type of data needed for decision making; Whether various input data is readily available for analyses; Their familiarity with a variety of existing work zone traffic analysis and road user cost software; and Their preference for the type of results reporting. The results of the survey were presented at the January 24, 2013 meeting of the ODOT DWZTMs. The group agreed they were not interested in pursuing the QuickZone or CA4PRS software. They wanted the research team to evaluate existing deterministic spreadsheet tools specific to short term work zone lane closures that are based on the HCM methodology. Their stated preference was for a simple tool whereby the traffic volumes, truck percentages, and work intensity could be entered to produce a reliable estimate of the queue. There was also interest in a tool that could provide analysis for multiple time periods, account for traffic diverted to alternate routes, and produce both tabular and graphical output. The results of the survey also showed that the DWZTMs were generally not familiar with available road user cost tools, specifically RealCost, HERS-ST, MicroBENCOST and BCA.Net and therefore did not have a preference for one tool over another. Through discussions with a technical liaison for the project, the research team was directed to improve upon the ODOT s Work Zone User Cost Calculations spreadsheet. The needs for the work zone road user costs tool were identified as: improve the decision-making process prior to establishment of the work zone; provide the ability to evaluate alternatives prior to establishment and through implementation of the work zone; and provide a basis for contractor incentives and disincentives based upon quantitative assessment of the work zone. State Survey At the beginning of the project, it was believed that the shortcomings of the existing queue analysis tools needed to be understood before selecting one for use by ODOT, to ensure that a poorly performing tool would not be identified for adoption. However, after the focus shifted to examining existing deterministic spreadsheet tools, the need for such a survey became moot. Six spreadsheet tools developed and or used by transportation agencies in Alabama, Missouri, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Pennsylvania were collected. A comparison of these spreadsheet tools revealed many similarities and the variations did not warrant such a large survey effort. In addition, in a previous survey by Edara and Cottrell (2007) no preference for a particular spreadsheet tool was found. Therefore the focus of the survey shifted to the criteria used by various state departments of transportation to evaluate the impacts of proposed lane closures. 5 Information about lane closure decision criteria was obtained through a combination of searching webpages, requesting information by , and contacting agency personnel by telephone. The collected documents and notes taken during telephone conversations reflected 41 state transportation agencies. Of those agencies, 23 reported using volume to capacity ratio, 18 used delay, 6 used queue length, and 4 used level of service, with some using multiple criteria for approving/rejecting proposed lane closures. Select Tool Components To identify components to incorporate into the queue analysis tool to satisfy the needs of the DWZTMs, the six spreadsheet tools were examined along with various versions of the HCM methodology for basic freeway segments. The following are the selected components. Single Segment Analysis - The 2010 HCM methodology recommends a multiple segment analysis and simulates the propagation of the queue upstream using time steps of 15 seconds to 1 minute for saturated conditions. The HCM acknowledges the complexity of the methodology and recommends the use of simulation software to evaluate queued conditions. Each of the six spreadsheet tools uses a single segment for analysis, representing the roadway upstream of the start of the work zone where a lane closure causes a reduction in capacity (i.e. bottleneck). Hour Time Interval - The Missouri, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Ohio spreadsheet tools use a one hour time interval. The Oklahoma and Alabama spreadsheet tools use a ten minute time interval however, the 10 minute volumes are determined by taking 1/6 of the hourly volumes, therefore the 10 minute analysis is comparable to the hourly analysis, barring any rounding errors. 24 Hour Analysis - The 6 examined tools can evaluate 24 consecutive, one hour periods. The Missouri tool provides the user to analyze 7 days but the same work zone lane configuration and capacity is applied to each day. AADT or Hourly Volumes Input - The Oklahoma and Alabama tools provide the option of using AADT or hour volumes. The AADT values are converted into hourly volumes by applying hourly and directional distribution percentag
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