Fhwa transims deployment project
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I nterfacing the MORPC Regional Model with Dynamic Traffic Simulation David Roden (AECOM) Supin Yoder (FHWA) Nick Gill and Zhuojun Jiang (MORPC) Rebekah Anderson and Greg Giaimo (ODOT). FHWA – TRANSIMS Deployment Project. Agenda. Study Overview Network Conversion and Debugging

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Fhwa transims deployment project

Interfacing the MORPC Regional Model with Dynamic Traffic SimulationDavid Roden (AECOM)Supin Yoder (FHWA)Nick Gill and Zhuojun Jiang (MORPC)Rebekah Anderson and Greg Giaimo (ODOT)

FHWA – TRANSIMS Deployment Project


  • Study Overview

  • Network Conversion and Debugging

  • Trip and/or Tour Conversion

  • User Equilibrium Assignment and Convergence

  • Output Results and Sensitivity Tests

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Purpose of the study
Purpose of the Study

  • AECOM, MORPC, ODOT, and FHWA are participating in a study to route and simulate MORPC’s tour-based demand on a TRANSIMS network

    • Create a time-dependent TRANSIMS network

    • Route and simulate TP+ trips on the TRANSIMS network

    • Route and simulate MORPC tours on the TRANSIMS network

    • Feedback travel times from TRANSIMS to the tour model

    • Create a time-dependent transit network and tour routing

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Network conversion process
Network Conversion Process

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Transims network

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Transims coding concepts
TRANSIMS Coding Concepts

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Original default transims network
Original/Default TRANSIMS Network

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Zone connector activity locations
Zone Connector Activity Locations

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Freeway access problems
Freeway Access Problems

Loop ramps were added to the TP+ network to improve results

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Transims travel demand concepts
TRANSIMS Travel Demand Concepts

  • TRANSIMS models individual persons for 24+ hours

  • Trips between specific activity locations, at specific times of day, using a specific travel mode and vehicle

    • Activity locations – street locations / block faces

    • Time of day (start/end/duration) – seconds

    • Modes – walk, bike, drive, ride, transit, P&R, K&R, etc.

  • Convert aggregate trip tables to individual travelers at specific locations and trip start times

    • Zones  activity locations within the zone

    • Daily/time period  second of the day

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Trip table conversion process
Trip Table Conversion Process

Block Boundaries

Block Data


Traffic Counts

Zone Boundaries

MORPC Zone Data

Non-HH Trip Tables

MORPC Diurnals

Subzone Factors


TP+ Scripts


Activity Location

Activity Location

Trip Tables

Diurnal Distributions


Trip File

Vehicle File

Household File

Population File

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Diurnal smoothing results
Diurnal Smoothing Results

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Activity location weights
Activity Location Weights

  • Use subzone socio-economic data to calculate trip attraction weights by trip purpose and orientation for each activity location within a TAZ

  • MORPC/ODOT provided a block data file to calculate the attraction weights

  • Inconsistencies between the TAZ and block file boundaries and socio-economic attributes necessitated complex data processing

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Taz block data integration issues
TAZ – Block Data Integration Issues

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Morpc tours transims tours

Activities have


start times

and durations

Trips connect


MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Transims router and microsimulator
TRANSIMS Router and Microsimulator

  • Router builds a unique path for each trip

    • Between origin and destination activity locations (link-offset)

    • Starting at a specific second of the day

    • Using a specified travel mode and vehicle

    • Based on network travel times in15-minute increments

  • Microsimulator moves vehicles between link-lane-cells on a second-by-second basis

    • Cells are 6 meters long

    • Vehicles move 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6 cells each second

      • Speeds = 0, 13.5, 27.0, 40.5, 54.0, 67.5 or 81.0 mph

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Microsimulator feedback loops
Microsimulator Feedback Loops

Trips / Tours



Travel Paths








Travel Times


MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Convergence statistics
Convergence Statistics

  • Convergence is defined using multiple statistics

    • Simulation stability and network performance

      • Number and location of “lost” vehicles by time of day

      • Difference between the average link delay and the Microsimulator link delay – vehicle hours of travel by link and time of day

    • User Equilibrium – no traveler can improve their travel time (impedance) by changing paths

      • Difference between the simulated path and the minimum impedance path for each traveler – vehicle hours of travel by trip

      • The percentage of travelers with significant differences

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Lost vehicle problems
Lost Vehicle Problems

Iteration 1

Iteration 25

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Trip model convergence statistics
Trip-Model Convergence Statistics

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Trip gap by time of day
Trip Gap by Time of Day

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Link vht gap by time of day
Link VHT Gap by Time of Day

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Atr 601 i 70 at brice rd
ATR 601: I-70 at Brice Rd.

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Total volume all stations
Total Volume: All Stations

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Operational impact test
Operational Impact Test

  • Used the turning movement volumes from the simulation to update the signal timing plans for all signals in the region

  • Applied Progression to calculate signal offsets

  • Applied Router-Microsimulator to convergence

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Signal timing and progression
Signal Timing and Progression

Aggregate Wait Time Problems

Signal Progression Corridors

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Daily cycle failures original
Daily Cycle Failures – Original

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Daily cycle failures operational test
Daily Cycle Failures – Operational Test

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation

Next steps
Next Steps

  • Implement global iterations between the tour-model and the network simulation

  • Perform sensitivity tests and future forecasts

  • Refine operational details in downtown to provide demand data for a VISSIM subarea analysis

  • Upgrade the model to TRANSIMS Version 5 Studio and Visualizer

MORPC TRANSIMS Implementation