Office of Operations
21st Century Operations Using 21st Century Technologies

Traffic Analysis Toolbox Volume XII:
Work Zone Traffic Analysis – Applications and Decision Framework

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Contact Information:

U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
Office of Operations (HOP)
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590

Publication #: FHWA-HOP-12-009

U.S. Department of Transportation logo.

April 2012

Table of Contents

1.0 Background and Objectives of this Guidebook

1.1 Overview of Work Zone Traffic Analysis Guidance

1.2 Role of Traffic Analysis Tools for Work Zone Applications

1.3 Organization of this Report

2.0 Establishing a Methodology for Work Zone Traffic Analysis

2.1 Identifying Work Zone Analysis Goals and Objectives

2.2 Selecting Measures of Effectiveness (MOE) and Thresholds

2.3 Identifying MOT Alternative Strategies

2.4 Conducting Fatal Flaw Analysis

2.5 Identifying Needed Coordination Between Projects

2.6 Steps in the Maintenance of Traffic Alternatives Analysis (MOTAA) and Decision Framework Process

3.0 Selecting the Appropriate Type of Traffic Analysis Tool

3.1 Analysis Tool Categories

3.2 Key Factors for Selecting the Analysis Tool(s)

3.3 Selecting The Analysis Tool(s)

3.4 Challenges in Selecting Traffic Analysis Tools for Work Zone Applications.

4.0 Key Considerations for Modeling Approach

4.1 Introduction

4.2 Using Sketch-Planning and Analytical/Deterministic Analysis

4.3 Using Travel Demand Model Analysis

4.4 Using Traffic Signal Optimization Analysis

4.5 Using Macroscopic Analysis

4.6 Using Mesoscopic Analysis

4.7 Using Microscopic Analysis

5.0 Establishing an MOTAA Decision Framework

5.1 Overview of an MOTAA Decision Framework

5.2 Approaches to Factor Prioritization

5.3 Weighting/Scoring Techniques

5.4 Decision-Making Tools for Work Zone Alternatives Analysis

6.0 Reconciling Inconsistencies and Conducting Sensitivity Analysis

6.1 Variations in the Measures of Effectiveness, Tools, and Outputs

6.2 Achieving Consistency of Results When Using Multiple Tools

6.3 Sensitivity Analysis

7.0 Evaluating Factors for MOTAA Recommendations

7.1 Work Zone Key Factors

7.2 Work Zone Safety Analysis

8.0 Analysis Report Structure

8.1 Introduction and Project Background

8.2 Existing and Future Conditions

8.3 Alternatives Considered

8.4 Alternatives Analysis and Decision Framework Methodology

8.5 Analysis Results, Recommended Alternative, and Mitigation Strategies

8.6 Post-implementation and Monitoring Plan

9.0 Work Zone Case Studies

9.1 Simple Flagging Work Zone Projects Using Traffic Signal Optimization Tools – Synchro

9.2 Rural Freeway Lane Closures Using Sketch Planning – Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) Lane Closure Analysis Program (LCAP)

9.3 Rural Freeway Lane Closures Using Mesoscopic Simulation – DynusT

9.4 Rural Freeway Lane Closures Using Microsimulation – CORSIM

9.5 Urban Freeway Lane Closures Using HCM/Deterministic Tools –FREEVAL

9.6 Urban Freeway Lane Closures Using Sketch-Planning Tools – ITS Deployment Analysis System (IDAS)

9.7 Temporary Two-Way One-Lane Operation on Bridges Using Traffic Signal Optimization Tools – Synchro

9.8 Signalized Corridor Lane Closures Using Traffic Signal Optimization Tools – Synchro/SimTraffic

9.9 Ramp Closures at Major Interchanges Using Traffic Signal Optimization and Microsimulation – Synchro and Paramics

9.10 Corridor Reconstruction with Complex Network-wide Impacts Using Travel Demand Modeling Tools – TRANPLAN

9.11 Corridor Reconstruction with Complex Network-wide Impacts Using Mesoscopic Simulation – INTEGRATION


List of Figures

Figure 1. Work Zone Analysis Strategies Decision-Making Engine

Figure 2. Maryland Strategic Emphasis Areas for Work Zone Safety and Mobility

Figure 3. New Jersey DOT Project Impact Matrix

Figure 4. MOTAA and Decision Framework Flowchart

Figure 5. Analytical Work Zone Decision Framework – Modeling Approaches

Figure 6. Work Zone Analysis Scoping Work Sheet

Figure 7. Framework for Identifying Appropriate Modeling Approach for Work Zones

Figure 8. Work Zone Decision-Making Process

Figure 9. Analysis Tool Selection Example: I-123 Reconstruction Project

Figure 10. Work Zone Modeling Spectrum

Figure 11. Locations of Queue Length Evaluation

Figure 12. Typical Model Development and Application Process for Work Zone Analysis

Figure 13. FREEVAL-2010

Figure 14. Experienced Travel Time versus Instantaneous Travel Time

Figure 15. O-D Matrix Calibration in Mesoscopic Models

Figure 16. Expected Level of Effort by Project Tasks for Microsimulation Projects

Figure 17. Example of a Traditional Decision-Framework

Figure 18. Weighting/Scoring Technique Framework

Figure 19. AHP Hierarchical Tree Example

Figure 20. Illustration of Relationships among Factors

Figure 21. Benefit/Cost Analysis Summary Results Example

Figure 22. Elements of CBR

Figure 23. Four Set Case Model – Work Zone Example

Figure 24. Work Zone Traffic Control CBR System

Figure 25. CBR System General Set

Figure 26. CBR System Problem Set

Figure 27. CBR System Effects Object

Figure 28. CBR System Solution Set

Figure 29. Preliminary Strategy Selection Matrix

Figure 30. Example Secondary Strategy Matrix: Construction

Figure 31. Level of Interdependence Matrix

Figure 32. I-15 Analysis Process

Figure 33. Lane Distribution at 1,000 Feet Upstream of Taper for Five Percent Trucks in a Two to One Configuration

Figure 34. Parameter Combinations for Two- to One-Lane Configuration

Figure 35. Summary of Cost Comparison for Scenarios and Maintenance Crews

Figure 36. Sensitivity Analysis Results for Crews 1 and 2

Figure 37. Sensitivity Analysis Results for Crews 3 and 4

Figure 38. Work Zone Travel Delay Analysis

Figure 39. SSAM Screenshot

Figure 40. Four-Way Flagging Work Zone Layout

Figure 41. Three-Way Flagging Work Zone Configuration

Figure 42. I-95 Howard County, Maryland Study Area Map

Figure 43. I-95 NB, Howard County, LCAP Output Trial 1 – Closure from 10:00 P.M. Wednesday to 5:00 A.M. Thursday

Figure 44. I-95 NB, Howard County, LCAP Output Trial 2 – Closure from 11:00 P.M. Wednesday to 5:00 A.M. Thursday

Figure 45. I-95 Howard County, LCAP Model Outputs

Figure 46. I-10/Loop 375 Case Study Project Area Map

Figure 47. I-10/Loop 375 Case Study – Lane-Miles with LOS Changes for Scenario 2.0

Figure 48. I-80 Work Zone Study Area

Figure 49. Delay Associated with Varying Headway Expansion Factors

Figure 50. Summary of Benefits and Costs for each Alternatives

Figure 51. I-40 Case Study Project Overview

Figure 52. Work Zone Impacts and Analysis Tools

Figure 53. HCM 2010 FREEVAL-WZ, I-40 Case Study Scenarios

Figure 54. I-40 Work Zone Scenarios Demand Profiles

Figure 55. Speed Contour Plot Comparisons

Figure 56. I-40 Case Study Work Zone Scenarios Travel Time Comparisons

Figure 57. I-40 Case Study Work Zone Scenarios Capacity Comparisons

Figure 58. I-40 Case Study Work Zone Scenarios Speed Contour Comparisons

Figure 59. I-496 Case Study Project Area Map

Figure 60. I-496 Reconstruction Project Phasing

Figure 61. I-496 Case Study – TTMS Benefits Summary (Phase 1)

Figure 62. I-496 Case Study – Arterial Upgrades Benefits Summary (Phase 1)

Figure 63. MD 23 Case Study Project Area Map

Figure 64. MD 23 Case Study – One-Lane Bridge Operations Layout

Figure 65. Shady Grove Road Work Zone Area Map

Figure 66. Shady Grove Road – Extent of Analysis

Figure 67. MD SHA Work Zone Analysis Guide Mobility Thresholds for Arterials

Figure 68. I-465 West Leg Reconstruction, Indianapolis Overview

Figure 69. I-465 Case Study Rockville Road Interchange Reconstruction Study Area

Figure 70. Rockville Road/U.S. 36 Interchange Ramp Closures

Figure 71. Rockville Road Case Study – Example Model Extents

Figure 72. Rockville Road Interchange Case Study – Locations of Zones for O-D Table

Figure 73. Rockville Road Interchange Case Study – Example AM Peak Period Existing Conditions O-D Table

Figure 74. Rockville Road Interchange – Existing Conditions Model 24-Hour Demand Profile

Figure 75. Rockville Road Interchange – Average Network Speed

Figure 76. Rockville Road Interchange – Average Number of Vehicles

Figure 77. Rockville Road Interchange – Average Network Delays

Figure 78. Rockville Road Interchange – Cumulative Network Delays

Figure 79. Rockville Road Interchange Reconstruction – Cumulative Network Delays during the Construction Period

Figure 80. I-465 West Leg, Rockville Road Interchange Reconstruction Decision Framework Example

Figure 81. Cleveland Innerbelt Project

Figure 82. Cleveland Innerbelt Corridor Sections

Figure 83. Ohio DOT Permitted Lane Closure Map (PLCM)

Figure 84. Cleveland Innerbelt Study: V/C Ratio Thematic Map (Alternative 1 – Full Closure)

Figure 85. Cleveland Innerbelt Study: V/C Ratio Thematic Map (Alternative 2 – Partial Closure)

Figure 86. Cleveland Innerbelt Study: Maintenance of Traffic Corridors Map

Figure 87. I-80 Eastbound Existing Conditions

Figure 88. I-80 Eastbound Contract Staging Plan

Figure 89. I-80 Eastbound Contractor Staging Alternative (Three-Lane Staging Plan)

Figure 90. I-80 Eastbound Alternatives Analysis Results

List of Tables

Table 1. Pros and Cons of Sketch-Planning Tools for WZTA

Table 2. Pros and Cons of Analytical/Deterministic Tools for WZTA

Table 3. Pros and Cons of Travel Demand Models for WZTA

Table 4. Pros and Cons of Traffic Signal Optimization Tools for WZTA

Table 5. Pros and Cons of Macroscopic Simulation Models for WZTA

Table 6. Pros and Cons of Mesoscopic Simulation Models for WZTA

Table 7. Pros and Cons of Microscopic Simulation Models for WZTA

Table 8. Project Stages

Table 9. Facility Types

Table 10. Tool Features

Table 11. Agency Resources Required for Analysis

Table 12. Work Zone Characteristics

Table 13. TMP Strategies

Table 14. Performance Measures

Table 15. Example Criteria Relevance Weight

Table 16. Tool Relevance Values – Project Stages

Table 17. Tool Relevance Values – Facility Types

Table 18. Tool Relevance Values – Tool Features

Table 19. Tool Relevance Values – Agency Resources Required for Analysis

Table 20. Tool Relevance Values – Work Zone Characteristics

Table 21. Tool Relevance Values – TMP Strategies

Table 22. Tool Relevance Values – Performance Measures

Table 23. Example Criteria Score Calculation

Table 24. Example Total Score Calculation

Table 25. Work Zone Analysis Scoring Sheet

Table 26. Example Work Zone Analysis Scoring Sheet: I-123 Corridor Reconstruction Project

Table 27. Table Work Zone Lane Capacity Defaults that Can Be Used in the Absence of Better Data: Short-Term Work Zones

Table 28. Work Zone Lane Capacity Defaults that Can Be Used in the Absence of Better Data: Long-Term Work Zones

Table 29. Work Zone Data Collection – Common Data

Table 30. Parameters to Adjust for Work Zone Analysis in Common Sketch- Planning and Analytical/Deterministic Analysis Tools

Table 31. Parameters to Adjust for Work Zone Analysis in Common Signal Optimization Software

Table 32. Mobility Thresholds for Arterials (MD SHA)

Table 33. Parameters to Adjust for Work Zone Analysis in Common Macroscopic Simulation Software

Table 34. Parameters to Adjust for Work Zone Analysis in Common Mesoscopic Simulation Software

Table 35. Level of Effort for Various Microsimulation Projects

Table 36. Parameters to Adjust for Work Zone Analysis in Common Microsimulation Software

Table 37. Factor Prioritization Methodologies Summary

Table 38. Pros and Cons of the Delphi Method

Table 39. Delphi Technique Example

Table 40. Delphi Example Scale Reference

Table 41. Delphi Example – Round 2 Questionnaire

Table 42. Delphi Example – Round 3

Table 43. Pros and Cons of Factor Analysis

Table 44. List of Potential Variables

Table 45. Example Factor Matrix

Table 46. Example Factor Scores

Table 47. Pros and Cons of the Ranking System

Table 48. Pros and Cons of the Ratio System

Table 49. Example of a Paired Comparison Analysis

Table 50. Pros and Cons of the Paired Comparison Analysis

Table 51. Pros and Cons of the 100-Point Distribution

Table 52. Assigning Criteria Weights – Ranking Method

Table 53. Assigning Criteria Weights – Ratio Method

Table 54. Assigning Criteria Weights – Paired Comparison Method

Table 55. Assigning Criteria Weights – 100-Point Distribution

Table 56. Evaluation Tools and Methods for Comparing Alternatives

Table 57. Example Score for Alternatives

Table 58. SAW Example

Table 59. Pros and Cons of SAW

Table 60. Pairwise Comparison Matrix

Table 61. Pairwise Matrix in Decimal Form

Table 62. Generating the Eigenvector

Table 63. Criteria Rankings/Weights

Table 64. Pairwise Comparison of Alternatives

Table 65. AHP Final Score and Recommendation

Table 66. Pros and Cons of AHP

Table 67. Pros and Cons of Kepner-Tregoe Method

Table 68. Pros and Cons of Benefit/Cost Analysis

Table 69. Pros and Cons of the CBR Tool

Table 70. Pros and Cons of the Matrix-Based Decision Support Tool

Table 71. Performance Measures and Outputs by Tool Type

Table 72. MOEs, Tools, and Outputs Utilized for I-15 Pavement Reconstruction Case Study

Table 73. I-15 Preconstruction Analysis Results

Table 74. Example Scenario Demand Adjustment Factors

Table 75. Example Scenario Capacity Adjustment Factors

Table 76. NETZONE Example General Statistics

Table 77. Closure Options for I-15 Devore Project

Table 78. Quadro Road User Cost Output Example

Table 79. Summary of Safety Surrogate Measures

Table 80. MOTAA Reporting Components Checklist

Table 81. Work Zone Case Studies Summary

Table 82. Summary of Data and Assumptions

Table 83. Alternative 1 – Synchro Model Outputs

Table 84. Alternative 2 – Synchro Model Outputs

Table 85. Recommended Work Zone Alternative

Table 86. Summary of Alternatives Analysis Modeling Results

Table 87. Value of Travel Time Savings

Table 88. Incremental Benefits and Costs for Each Alternative (in Thousands)

Table 89. MD 23 Case Study – Clearance Interval Calculations

Table 90. MD 23 One-Lane Bridge Operations – Synchro Model Outputs

Table 91. Shady Grove Existing Conditions Model Outputs

Table 92. Shady Grove Road – Work Zone Base Model Outputs

Table 93. Shady Grove Road – Existing (Weekend Work Zone) Model Outputs

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