ROM TRANSPORTATION ENGINEERING LTD. Company Profile. ROM Transportation Engineering Ltd.
ROM is a leading international transportation consultancy, based in Israel and operating worldwide. Our firm specializes in consulting the public sector on all aspects of transportation planning and policies, and particularly in developing integrative urban transport solutions for large metropolitan areas.
In recent years we have led several large-scale transportation consulting projects in Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe. Many of these projects were financed by the World Bank, and required professional proficiency and managerial capabilities in line with the highest international standards. For the last 12 years we have also provided our services to the Israeli Ministries of Transport, Interior and Finance, and to the municipalities of Israel’s largest cities (Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Haifa).
Our excellence is based on the professional and managerial abilities of our staff. Our senior consultants have occupied some of the highest positions in the transportation sector in Israel, and are personally involved in every one of our projects, from the earliest stages of inception, through the various phases of implementation, and up to the final presentation of our work. ROM is registered in Israel (1997), Georgia (2007) and Nigeria (2007).
Jerusalem Transportation Master Plan
From 1994 to 2004, Dr. Moshe Hirsh, ROM's general manager, also served as director of the Jerusalem Transportation Master Plan Team (JTMT). This master plan included the preparation and promotion of mass transit master plan for Jerusalem Metropolitan area. The adopted plan includes a combination of LRT and BRT lines.
Dr. Hirsh managed all relevant activities, including: preparation of the traffic demand model, corridor selection, engineering design, legal reform, tender process, selection of the concessionaire, granting the concession and assisting in the financial closure.
ROM is currently supervising the development of the new Activity-based Model for the city, done by the American firm PB.
Tel Aviv Congestion Pricing
ROM consulted the Israeli Ministry of Transport regarding the best option to reduce congestion and pollution in the Tel Aviv Metropolitan Area. We prepared a detailed survey of recent worldwide experience, analyzed the transportation, economic and environmental effects of various pricing and restriction options, measured public support for the various options, reviewed the regulatory framework and recommended the optimal scheme.
Cross-Israel Highway – Due Diligence
The Cross-Israel Highway is one of Israel’s biggest PPP projects. ROM was selected by Bank Hapoa’lim, Israel’s largest bank, to conduct due diligence for traffic forecasts and cost estimates prepared by one of the bidders.
ROM developed an alternative Travel Demand Model and reviewed cost estimates for this 1.2 billion USD project.
Traffic Assistance to the Tbilisi Municipality
In 2007 ROM was selected by the World Bank to assist the municipality of Tbilisi in developing a transport strategy for the city; reorganizing the local Traffic Department; improving traffic management and parking; improving road safety; and preparing a short and long term transportation investment plan.
The project included calibrating a preliminary Travel-Demand Model for the city, analyzing traffic management capacities, proposing changes and measures to improve traffic flow and road safety, preparing detailed tender documents for a traffic control center and for on- and off-street parking concession, and preparing a list of projects to be implemented in the short and long term according to economic analysis and budget restrictions.
Baku - Restructuring the public transit network
Kazakhstan’s “Silk Way” Corridor
ROM provided Design review, demand forecasting for freight and passenger, and preliminary cost estimate for this 6 billion USD civil works project, that is planned to be opened in 2013 and connect Western China with Western Europe. We proposed an integrative traffic management policy for the entire corridor – including tolling and an advanced traffic control system along the corridor, based on innovative ITS technology.
Poland – National Road Safety Campaign
ROM served as the chief consultant firm in this large scale World Bank project in Poland in 2005. The project’s purposes were to study the Polish road safety perceptions using extensive qualitative and quantitative studies,and launch a campaign to increase public awareness to the importance of seat belt use.
ROM conducted several focus groups, in-depth interviews, and a large scale national quantitative survey. It prepared a road safety strategy, developed a campaign strategy combined with parallel effective enforcement, designed an effectiveness survey and analyzed its results.
It was the first time In Poland that a public service announcement aimed to change people’s behavior on the road in such a concerted way. The ads ran in movie theaters, TV, radio and internet, and even made their way to 10,000 parish churches across Poland where priests displayed campaign posters and held sermons on the protection of human lives and personal responsibility.
As a result of the campaign, seat-belt use went up more than 10% in one year.
Burgas - Restructuring the public transit network
The objective of this EU-financed project was to improve the bus network, introduce a BRT corridor, increase transit attractiveness through improved accessibility, prioritize environmentally-friendly modes of transit such as BRT and bicycle, and lower levels of pollution.
ROM’s role in this assignment, as a sub-consultant to ARUP, was to develop a a multi-modal travel demand model for Burgas to be used in the selection of the preferred investment option.
To meet the tight sceduale ROM assigned more than 5 expert at a time and delivered this multi-modal TDM within 3 months from the beginning of the project. In this short time ROM collected all data, conducted numerous extensive surveys (a robust on-board survey with more than 4,200 interviewees, passenger counts, traffic counts, GPS survey, THS, and more), calibrated and validated the model, applied it on several scenario, and developed a post processor tool to analyse the output of the model.
Pristine (Kosovo) – assistance in traffic management
This WB-financed assignment included setting an urban transport strategy for the city, reorganizing the transport department, reforming parking management, designing new traffic circulation, preparing detailed 5-years and 10-years investmentaction plans.
In addition ROM selected a list of principal interchanges and conducted a geometric design plan for implementation.
Lagos Transportation Master Plan
ROM was selected by the World Bank to prepare the Transportation Master Plan for Lagos, Nigeria.
The assignment included developing a first-ever Travel Demand Model for the Lagos Metropolitan Area, a mega-city which includes roughly 17 million inhabitants.
ROM evaluated the current structure and responsibilities of the Lagos Metropolitan Transport Authority (LAMATA); conducted extensive traffic surveys and counts; analyzed development alternative and proposed investment plans and financing models for various infrastructure projects; introduced measures to enhance roads safety; developed integrated and multi-modal transport projects; and proposed changes to the regulatory environment to support the proposed Master Plan.
The project was successfully completed in February 2009.
Maseru Urban and Transportation Planning
ROM currently develops the first-ever travel demand model for Maseru, capital of Lesotho in Africa. The surveys conducted include an on-board OD for public transport passengers, a household travel habit survey with GPS verification, traffic counts, focus groups, site OD for car users, and pedestrian counts. The model is designed to include walking trips as a special mode – a feature that is highly relevant for many cities in Africa.
The project also includes traffic management assistance: improvement of the public transit network, traffic signalation, sidewalk improvement, parking, congestion reduction through traffic improvements.
ROM is currently working together with PB (Parsons Brinckerhoff), a world leader in transportation planning, on developing the new Activity-Based Tour-based Model for Jerusalem. The Jerusalem project schedule spans four years and includes intensive data collection effort (currently under way) followed by model estimation, implementation, calibration and validation.
The proposed model design includes several unique innovative features that have not yet been applied in the practice of regional travel models, including: explicit modeling of intra-household interactions and joint travel, enhanced temporal resolution, individual mobility-related attributes and explicit modeling of parking location choice.
ROM’s modeling staff includes some of the most prominent transportation modelers in Israel. They were involved in the design of the current TDMs for Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem, and took part in the development of the San-Francisco Activity-Based Model done by PB.
One of ROM’s main fields of expertise is integrative transportation planning for metropolitan areas. We have developed and calibrated advanced Travel Demand Models (TDMs) for cities of very different sizes and characteristics, from Mega-cities such as Lagos, Nigeria (~15 million inhabitants), through large cities such as Baku, Azerbaijan (~4 million inhabitants), to medium sized cities such as Burgas, Bulgaria and Pristine, Kosovo.
Our models use the TransCAD and EMME-2/3 modeling softwares, and our staff is knowledgeable in a variety of advanced planning tools. All models are based on extensive surveys and state-of-the-art data collection techniques, some of them unique to ROM (see opposite). They enable policy makers, urban planners, economists and environmentalists to develop short and long term policies, assess future investments in transport, and restructure mass-transit networks to better suite demand and future projections.
Congestion and travel-time measurementsusing an innovative and unique method, which is based on data received from cell-phone operators. We have used this method to analyze traffic in the Tel-Aviv metropolitan area in different times of the day.
Travel Habit Surveys. Recently we have conducted a Household THS in Maseru, Lesotho, which included 1,000 households – ~1% of the total population, selected randomly according to geographic location.
On-board Surveys. On-board surveys in which passengers were handed questionnaires regarding the origin and destination (OD), purpose of travel, stated preferences etc.
On-board passenger counts in buses, including number of passengers alighting and descending in each stop.
Focus groups to analyze public perceptions, complaints and expects regarding different transportation issues .
ROM has vast experience in collecting transportation-related data and conducting a variety of relevant surveys. We handle the entire process, from planning to analysis, including management and surveillance of the field work. In many projects we have proved our capability to organize complex counts and surveys under tight time schedules and budget restraints. We are fully capable to cope with logistic challenges, and use state-of-the-art software tools to analyze the collected data quickly and efficiently. More specifically, we have experience in:
Classified Traffic counts in road segments and in intersections. Our count data was used for modeling and planning , traffic light design (signal phases) and intersection design.
Travel time measurements of buses and private cars, using a GPS-based software – the quickest, cheapest and most accurate way to perform travel time measurements.
ITS (Intelligent Transport Systems) and Control Centers – our staff was involved in designing the Jerusalem Traffic Control Center, and we have prepared detailed tender documents for TCCs in Tbilisi and other cities; ITS design was a major part of several ROM projects such as the Kazakhstan “Silk Road” corridor;
Parking schemes – we have developed integrative on-street and off-street parking schemes for cities such as Istanbul, Moscow, Lagos, Tbilisi and more;
Infrastructure Design – traffic light (simple phases, synchronized phases, sensors), geometrical design of problematic intersections and road segments;
Micro-modeling – we use innovative software such as TransModeler to analyze traffic in a specific area and appraise different design options;
Tolling and pricing schemes – Several of our projects, such as the Kazakhstan “Silk Road” and Tel-Aviv Congestion Management, included the examination of different pricing schemes using state-of-the-art ITS technologies.
ROM is active in all aspects of traffic management. In our projects we usually analyze existing traffic management capacities, identify weak spots, develop a new TM strategy together with stakeholders, and prepare short, medium and long term plans for investments according to necessity, feasibility, economic considerations and available budgets. The coming pages will provide a more detailed information about our capacities in the following fields:
Public Transit Networks –design and restructuring of bus networks, BRT and LTR corridors, and integration with existing transit systems;
Public Transport Improvement – raising level of service, introducing advanced and integrative ticketing schemes, designing stops and terminals;
Road Safety – identifying current capacities and problems, creating modern accident databases, introducing enforcement measures, capacity building for the traffic police, and conducting local and national road safety campaigns;
ROM believes in promoting sustainable and integrated transportation systems. The cornerstones of our approach are:
High Quality of Service – designing transit systems that people will find more reliable, convenient and cheap than driving private cars;
Integration – terminals and physical integration between all transit systems in a city (metro, LRT, BRT, bus, taxi), uniform ticketing, interface with non-transit modes such as cycling and cars;
Green transit – favoring environmentally-friendly solutions and promoting a livable enivornment;
Social equality – promoting transit schemes that can increase mobility options for the less fortunate, and leverage their economic and social opportunities;
Financial sustainability – transit systems should be attractive enough while aspiring to be financially sustainable.
In all our projects we always give the highest priority to road safety issues, and work with prominent road-safety experts and researchers. Our experience in this fields includes:
Road safety campaigns – we were selected by the World Bank to lead a large project of road safety surveys and campaigns in Poland, with emphasis on seat-belt use. The project included conducting surveys and focus groups, developing a road safety strategy, and enhancing public awareness. It was considered highly successful, and WB reports estimate that many lives were saved thank to it.
Accident investigation and databases – in Tbilisi, Lagos and other places, we have analyzed existing procedures of accident investigation by the traffic police and the storage and use of accident data. According to our findings we have developed modern, uniform accident investigation forms, and assisted the traffic police in creating a computerized accident database in line with international best practice, to provide decision makers with a clear picture of the traffic safety situation in any given location and time.
Traffic improvements – Road accidents are often the result of traffic mismanagement, congestion, lack of traffic lights, and bad infrastructure. We identify both general and local weak spots and propose ways to handle them: traffic light design, geometrical improvements, changes in traffic arrangements, etc.
Design guidelines – together with another Israeli firm, we have developed new geometric design guidelines for all rural roads in Georgia (a WB-financed project). One of the major requirements from the new guidelines was compatibility with the highest international standards regarding road safety.
Enforcement of traffic regulations – no road safety policy is complete without effective enforcement measures. We are working with prominent Israeli experts, including the previous chief of the Israeli Traffic Police Force, to consult governments and municipalities on how to improve their traffic police, and train local staff in the use of electronic enforcement equipment. We also analyze the exiting legal and regulatory framework and suggest necessary improvements.
ROM complements its transportation planning capacities with knowledge and experience in traffic engineering. Having identified critical spots in the urban transportation network, we design detailed geometric modifications and traffic light schemes to improve traffic flow and enhance road safety.
For example, following the outputs of the our project for traffic and transport assistance to the Tbilisi Municipality, The Tbilisi Transport Department has identified 11 major intersections which have very problematic and unsafe traffic flow. ROM was chosen by tender to redesign those intersections. As a preliminary step we conducted extensive traffic counts in the intersections. Our work included detailed geometrical design, design of traffic signals including synchronized phases between adjacent intersections and “green waves”, preparation of detailed bills of quantity, and supervision of construction works.
TransModeler can simulate all kinds of road networks, from freeways to downtown areas, and can analyze wide area multimodal networks in great detail and with high fidelity.
With TransModeler we can model and visualize the behavior of complex traffic systems in a 2-dimensional or 3-dimensional GIS environment, to illustrate and evaluate traffic flow dynamics, traffic signal and ITS operations, and overall network performance. Special features of TransModeler include adding obstacles to traffic and analyzing their effect, for example random pedestrian crossing, parking cars, slowing vehicles, and more.
The final analysis provides decision makers with traffic data such as average speed and vehicle stop/delay times, and enables them to reach a rational decision between several design options.
In addition to developing transportation models for large metropolitan areas, ROM also specializes in innovative techniques of micro-modeling, to analyze the traffic behavior in a limited area and produce traffic forecasts according to different design alternatives.
Some examples for cases in which we use micro-modeling are: how would traffic in the neighborhood behave if the direction of traffic in a certain street is changed? If a marketplace is moved several meters aside? If we add a bus lane to the road? If we change parking arrangements?
For micro-modeling we use an innovative software called TransModeler, which was developed by researchers in the Technion, Israel’s Technical Institute. TransModeler is a powerful and versatile traffic simulation package, applicable to a wide array of traffic planning and modeling tasks.
Dr. Moshe Hirsh
Dr. Hirsh has 27 years of professional experience. As National Transportation Commissioner and Chief Transportation and Traffic Engineer for the Ministry of Transport, he has occupied the highest professional positions in the transportation sector in Israel. From 1994-2004 he was Head of the Jerusalem Transportation Master Plan Team. Dr. Hirsh is personally involved in most of ROM’s projects and has vast experience in managing international transport consulting assignments. He holds a PhD in Transportation Engineering.
Head of Transport
Ofir is ROM’s senior transportation planner. He has extensive experience in various projects worldwide. He has designed and applied urban transport models in Burgas, Baku, Pristine, Lagos, Tel-Aviv, Jerusalem and more. Prior to joining ROM, Ofir worked in Parsons Brinkerhoff, USA as task manager in complex studies such as the Travel Demand Model for the San Francisco Bay Area. Mr. Cohen holds a MA in Urban studies and a BSc in computer engineering. He is fluent in the most up-to-date transportation software packages.
Nir is ROM's senior project manager. He has coordinated several assignments in Tbilisi, Eastern Europe and Africa, from project inception phases through implementation and reporting. He has personally supervised transport surveys and data collection conducted by ROM in different cities, and trained local staff in data collection techniques. Nir is also responsible for QC and verifies the integrity and the quality of the collected data.
Leonid is a highly experienced Transport Modeler. He has designed and applied numerous TDMs worldwide, including several state-of-the-art Activity Based Models. Leonid is the main developer of the Tel-Aviv Travel Demand Model. Until 2003 he was Deputy Director for R&D at the Israel Institute for Transportation Planning and Research (IITPR). He was involved in some of ROM’s largest assignments, such as the Lagos Transportation Master Plan.
Shmuel has more than 20 years of experience in the field of Traffic Management. He is proficient in the design, installation and maintenance of Traffic Control Centers, both for car traffic and public transport. He has served for more than 10 years as the manager of Jerusalem Traffic Control Center, , a state-of-the-art TCC for which he designed all the elements, wrote most of the codes and integrated the components.
Gassan is an experienced traffic engineer, who has acquired international experience in Georgia, Kosovo, and Lagos. Gassan has designed several traffic arrangements in congested urban environments, including priority facilities for public transport (dedicated lanes, bus stops, terminal, traffic lights, etc.) He has more than 15 years of experience as traffic engineer.
Our firm has 13 years of experience in international project management. In addition to our technical capacities in the field of transportation we have acquired proficiency in leading, managing and supervising complex transportation projects in a variety of work environments, from developing countries to emerging economies and to technologically-advanced markets. Our management capacities, and our ability to perform complex tasks under tight schedules and budget, have been demonstrated in many projects worldwide.
ROM engages several multi-lingual project managers with international experience. We always assign professional staff with the highest expertise in the relevant fields, and proved experience in similar assignments. In addition, we believe that the best results can be reached by matching international and local expertise. Therefore in all our projects we cooperate with local firms, consultants and experts.
We have been selected as consultant in many World Bank financed projects, and are fully acquainted with all World Bank procedures and standards.
ROM has ISO 9000 certificate since 1997. Two staff members are dedicated to QC/QA. The adopted standards cover all areas including home based and client's site.
ROM Transportation Engineering Ltd.
97 Jaffa Rd, POB 28009
Jerusalem 91280, Israel
Dr. Moshe Hirsh