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FHWA / AASHTO Domestic Scan Maximizing Traffic Flow on Existing Highway Facilities General Findings and Recommendations. NCHRP. American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. National Cooperative Highway Research Program. Federal Highway Administration. Overview.

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FHWA / AASHTO Domestic ScanMaximizing Traffic Flow on Existing Highway FacilitiesGeneral Findings and Recommendations


American Association of State

Highway and Transportation Officials

National Cooperative

Highway Research Program

Federal Highway Administration



  • Background
  • Scan approach and objectives
  • General findings and observations
  • Summary of Best Practices
  • Team Recommendations
scan approach
Scan Approach
  • Paper framing the issues and scope
  • Assemble a team of experts
  • Complete a desk scan report
  • Identify agencies to visit
scan approach1
Scan Approach
  • Amplifying questions for host agencies
  • Complete scan/prepare summary report
  • Implement promising strategies
  • Evaluate benefits
  • No longer confined to the largest metro areas
  • Mobility is constrained
  • Economic impacts
  • Community livability
  • Environmental considerations
  • Normally congestion is at the top of the list of civic concerns in metropolitan areas
so where does this leave us
So where does this leave us?

Increasing congestion requires innovative management strategies

Sustain acceptable levels of service for the public and freight industry

Find ways to more effectively utilize the existing infrastructure

Increased capacity expansion is becoming less of an option due to costs and environmental concerns

Public accountability has lead to a more customer service driven focus

our scan s objectives are
Our Scan’s Objectives Are:

Identification of best practices and the conditions under which each is applicable/best suited.

Investigate implementation of these strategies

Gather and document specific examples

Develop a summary report.

areas of prime interest are
Areas of Prime Interest Are:

Evaluation and selection of alternatives

Innovative solutions development

Lane use solutions

ITS and other management strategies

Performance monitoring and data

Lessons learned and research needed

the team
The Team

Greg Jones, Co-Chair


Ted Trepanier, Co-Chair

State Traffic Engineer WSDOT

Tony Abbo

Assistant District Three Traffic Engineer

NM State DOT

Mark Demidovich

Assistant State Traffic Engineer

Georgia DOT

Lee Nederveld

ITS Engineer

Michigan DOT

Michael Pillsbury



Jeanne Acutanza

Senior Technologist

CH2M Hill

5 States, FHWA, Private Sector


Scan Team Member Home States

Ted Trepanier Washington DOT

Mike Pillsbury

New Hampshire DOT

Jeanne Acutanza


Lee A Nederveld

Michigan DOT

Tony S Abbo

New Mexico DOT

Mark Demidovich

Georgia DOT

Gregory Jones

FHWA Georgia


Places Visited - Scan States







Virginia DOT – Chantilly, VA

Maryland SHA – Hanover, MD

NJ Turnpike – Woodbridge, NJ

Minnesota DOT – Minneapolis, MN

Caltrans – Sacramento, CA

Caltrans – San Francisco, CA

Caltrans – Los Angeles, CA

Caltrans – San Diego, CA

WSDOT – Seattle, WA

DDOT – Washington D.C. via Webcast

strategies to be reviewed may include but are not limited to such items as
Strategies to be reviewed may include, but are not limited to such items as:

Contra flow lanes (lane control signals or moveable barrier systems)

Reversible lanes

Real-time traffic management using ITS technologies (ATIS and ATMS)

Congestion pricing

Use of shoulders as lanes

Narrow lanes

Traffic smoothing strategies such as ramp metering

Integrated Corridor Management

working meetings
Working Meetings
  • 55 Presentations
  • 8 Operation Center Tours
  • 1 Webinar
findings observations msha vdot wdc dot
Findings & Observations – MSHA/VDOT/WDC DOT
  • Good example of cross jurisdictional coordination through MATOC
  • Partnership with U MD for data fusion RITIS Construction interface for work zones
  • Pool fund makes RITIS available to others
    • Emerging utility
    • Developing a tool to assess contraflow
    • 3-D Capability
    • Share Ware
  • Coordination with I-95 Corridor
  • CapWIN software for incident management
findings observations vdot
Findings & Observations – VDOT
  • McConnell Operations Center
    • Shared Use 911/Security
    • Multiple Agencies
    • Supervisor Coordination Area
  • Business Model from Utility company
  • Strength is Leadership within the organization
  • Coordinated Construction Zone data entry
findings observations vdot1
Findings & Observations – VDOT
  • Retail Center Traffic Information 511 Kiosks
  • Signal retiming every 2 years
  • Reverse Ramp Metering
    • Non Peak Direction
  • Shoulder Use on I-66
    • Overhead Lane Designations
    • Time of Day
    • DMS
    • pavement color

Places Visited - Scan States







Virginia DOT – Chantilly, VA

Maryland SHA – Hanover, MD

NJ Turnpike – Woodbridge, NJ

Minnesota DOT – Minneapolis, MN

Caltrans – Sacramento, CA

Caltrans – San Francisco, CA

Caltrans – Los Angeles, CA

Caltrans – San Diego, CA

WSDOT – Seattle, WA

DDOT – Washington D.C. via Webcast

findings observations msha
Findings & Observations – MSHA
  • CHART Operations Center
    • Operations Centers Cover the State
    • Time of Year
  • Unconventional intersection design

  • Use Blue Tooth Speed data
  • Integrated Corridors I-270
    • Skycomp aerial survey
    • Mesoscopic Modeling
findings observations msha1
Findings & Observations – MSHA
  • After Action Incident Planning/RITIS
  • Signals Retimed every 3 years
  • Bay Bridge Contraflow
    • DMS Show Queue time and alternate routes
  • I-95
    • Implementing open toll express lanes
    • CCTV, DMS, detection
    • Lane crossing detection
findings observations wdc dot
Findings & Observations – WDC DOT
  • Radial Hub System
    • Part of MATOC
    • 1100 miles of road and 15 miles of freeway
    • 2/3 driving in the city don’t live there
    • Trying to reduce cut through trips
    • 37% don’t own a car and emphasis on CSS/Livability
  • Reversible Lanes
    • Fine arts Commission Policy on Overhead signs
    • Reversible lanes
    • Vehicle Conflicts
    • Signal timing balanced with peds
  • Education and outreach is key using social media
findings observations njdot njtpke panynj
Findings & Observations – NJDOT/NJTPKE/PANYNJ
  • STMC Operations Center
    • Turnpike/NJDOT (coordination with PA NY/NJ)
    • History with ITS
    • Enforce Speeds/Speed Protocol
    • 511 Travel e-alerts
    • Considering traffic prediction tools for incidents
    • Multi Agency and Union Representation
  • Transcomm overarching planning ($250K membership)
  • Commercial Data Use
    • Toll Tag Data fused with INRIX
    • Currently SWIFT/INRIX Side by side (I-95 coalition)
findings observations njdot njtpke panynj1
Findings & Observations – NJDOT/NJTPKE/PANYNJ
  • Port Authority Tolls linked to CPI
  • Outsourcing ITS on Corridors
  • Collaborating with NJIT and Rutgers
  • Smart workzones
    • real time messages
    • ITS in workzones
  • Incident response includes Quick Clearance
  • Shoulder use Newark Bay Bridge
  • Lincoln Tunnel Reversible Lanes
    • XBL
    • Port Authority storage of buses
  • Time of day Shoulder Use by Transit (GWB)
findings observations mndot
Findings & Observations – MNDOT
  • RTMC Operations Center
    • State Patrol 911 call center
    • Parking information
    • High Refresh rate of Loops (30 seconds)
    • Warehouse Data
  • On-going planning Low Cost Projects (CMSP) solving bottlenecks
  • Ramp Metering
    • Tested Thru Controversy
    • Performance Guarantees 2/4 Minutes
    • Meter HOVs

“You can do more with less but you can’t do everything

with nothing” James Kranig, MNDOT

findings observations mndot1
Findings & Observations - MNDOT

“We don’t have a

spare I-35W” James Kranig

  • Active Traffic Management
    • FIRST Incident Response
    • MnPass
    • I-35 Great example benefit of redundant fiber
  • Priced Dynamic Shoulder Lanes
  • LED Pavement Lighting
findings observations mndot2
Findings & Observations - MNDOT
  • I-394 Reversible Lanes
  • Bus on Shoulders
    • AVL Technology
    • Time of Day Use
    • 250 Mile System
  • Narrow Lanes to add 4th lane on I-35 W
  • IRIS in house control software ($700,000)
  • Arterial Traffic Management Highway 13 UPA
  • ICM projects I-35
  • Future ICM Expansion (494) including Trailblazing and detouring
findings observations ca statewide
Findings & Observations – CA - Statewide
  • SB 45 – MPO coordination DOTs 1997
  • PeMS Data collection and Data sharing
  • State law allows Hybrids in HOV lanes
  • Urban Areas Differ Across the State
  • Mobility Pyramid
findings observations ca bay area
Findings & Observations – CA – Bay Area
  • Web based construction inputs
  • Fusing speed data
  • Ramp Metering
  • Looking into Pricing Cordoned Neighborhoods
  • After Action Incident Planning
  • 511 System
    • Alternative Route Comparisons
    • e-alerts
    • Travel Time Comparisons
    • Social Media and Monitoring
  • Expressway System
    • 400 miles to 800
    • HOT
findings observations ca bay area1
Findings & Observations – CA – Bay Area
  • ICM I-80 phase 2
  • UPA project includes parking management
  • San Mateo 101 corridor project (SMART)
    • Travel time and train times Comparison
    • Active trail blazing
    • Signal coordination and synchronization
    • Software SMART Corridor
  • Detection best investment
  • Study of non-recurring congestion
findings observations ca los angeles
Findings & Observations – CA – Los Angeles
  • Planned Pricing Expressway Harbor and El Monte Busway
    • EJ criteria
    • Established Performance Restricts HOVs
    • Guarantees Performance
    • Coordinates with Parking
    • Toll 1.5 X higher than Bus
    • Incident Response
    • Concept of Operations
  • SR 91 Static Published Pricing
    • 6 month Price Evaluations
    • Success
    • Future Expansion
  • Adaptive Traffic Control Signal
    • Many corridors
    • Coordinated Ops center
    • Automated
    • Desirable metrics
findings observations ca los angeles1
Findings & Observations – CA – Los Angeles
  • Shoulder Use on 110 Freeway to Freeway
    • DMS and in pavement markers
  • Foothill Freeway I-210 Ramp Metering
    • Full control of the system
    • SWARM Algorithms
    • Meter HOV bypass lanes
    • Meter freeway to freeway
  • Recalibrate Loops Every Night at 2am
  • RIITS data integration/fusion
findings observations ca san diego
Findings & Observations – CA – San Diego
  • Strong Planning – Operations Partnership
    • Matching grant opportunities to technology
    • Pricing as Congestion Management (not revenue generation)
  • Sustainability Evaluation Criteria
  • Regional Arterial Management System
    • Regional Traffic Engineering council
    • Signal control flushes arterials
  • Data Collection
    • Arterial PeMs
    • Transit PeMS and
    • BlendedPeMs
  • Compass Card integrates transit/parking
  • 511 system 2 Mil. calls/1Mil. visitors
  • Performance metrics to public
findings observations ca san diego1
Findings & Observations – CA – San Diego
  • Ramp Metering
    • Adaptive with local control
    • Converting HOV bypass to mixed uses
  • Bus only Shoulders (BOSS)
    • I-805
    • Commercial Vehicle Buy-in
  • I-15 HOT lanes
    • Defines Access
    • Convenient park-and-ride w/direct access
    • Performance Guarantee
    • SOVs may be restricted
    • Intermediate Access Point
    • Pop up delineators
    • Future automated vehicle occupancy
    • Congestion to pricing algorithms
findings observations wsdot
Findings & Observations – WSDOT
  • Q program for
    • Planning and prioritization of small projects
    • Focus on Bottlenecks
  • Gray notebook of performance metrics
  • SR 167 Communications Public
    • Pumptoppers, post cards, signs
    • Social Media
  • UW students TMC Operators
  • Moving to ATM and Lane Control
    • Enforced Variable Speeds
    • Branding as Smart Highways
findings observations wsdot1
Findings & Observations – WSDOT
  • SR 167 HOT Lanes
    • Exit/entry Striping
  • Shoulder use
    • SR 520 HOV
    • US 2 time of day ramp meters
  • Reversible/Express Lanes I-5 and I-90
  • Variable Speed Limits and Harmonization
  • JOPS – State Patrol and DOT
  • Dedicated Travel times signs at decision points
  • Instant tow and Blok Buster towing
  • MIT incident response
  • County Coroner Agreements
findings observations private traffic data providers
Findings & Observations – Private Traffic Data Providers

Follow up to VA, MD and NJ

Fusion of probe, loop other and historical data

Providers include



Air sage


Fill in data gaps

Feedback to Agencies Loop Function

Provide data quickly where loops are not present

Eventually predict congestion


Don’t provide volume data

Don’t cover arterials well nor rural areas



  • Common Practices
  • Best Practices
  • Emerging Practices
  • Recommendations
common practices
Common Practices
  • Traffic Operations Centers with ITS
    • Detection (loops, radar)
    • Dynamic message signs (DMS)
    • Surveillance cameras (CCTV)
  • Advanced traveler information systems
    • incident response
    • vehicle clearance
    • work zone and management
  • Reversible lanes within specific right-of-way
  • Ramp Meters Service Interchanges
  • Use of Shoulders
    • Time of day
    • Transit
best practices
Best Practices
  • Traffic Operations Centers with ITS
    • Coordination with Multiple Agencies
    • Integration with Construction Zones
  • Work zone coordination and management
  • Advanced traveler information systems
    • Incident response
    • Vehicle clearance
  • Management incident response vehicles using Automated Vehicle Location
best practices1
Best Practices
  • Broadcast of data
    • Real time travel speeds
    • Social Media
  • Advanced traffic signal timing
    • Maintenance of signal timing
    • Multiple signal timing plans.
  • Shoulder use
    • Professional drivers accompanied with pavement markings, signs and overhead designation
  • Express lanes as managed or HOT facilities.
emerging practices
Emerging Practices
  • Advanced traveler information including routes and mode choice
  • Traveler information data is being fused to predict and plan for congestion
  • Active traffic management
    • Express lanes or congestion pricing (HOT)
    • Lane by lane control
    • Advisory or enforced variable speeds
    • Dynamic messages
  • In pavement markings LED to change lane designations
emerging practices1
Emerging Practices
  • Photo radar in work zones
  • Adaptive traffic signal control for intersection use
  • Shoulder use by transit and commercial vehicles using IntelliDriveSM
  • Automated enforcement including passenger detection for HOC Occupancy
  • Ramp-metering
    • Using Ramp Metering in reverse direction and all times of the day
    • Eliminate or meter HOV bypass lanes
    • Meter freeway-to-freeway system ramps

If you haven’t considered ramp metering you haven’t

started addressing congestion. Tony Abbo

  • Ramp metering is very effective
    • Closed Systems metering system interchanges
    • Use algorithms (like SWARM) or performance guarantees (like MnDOT)
    • Consider Metering HOV Bypass
  • Adaptive traffic control systems
    • Freeway and Local Arterial Connection
    • Establish Controls and Agreements
    • Start with numerous timing plans (use all the capabilities)
    • Implement Intellidrive as available
  • Improve incident response
    • Use AVL to improve responsiveness
    • After Action Reviews, shared learning
    • Establish B/C
  • Make accessible to agencies
    • Concepts of Operation (Active Traffic Management)
    • IT/Traffic Operations Center boundary agreements
    • Joint operational protocols for incident response
    • Freeware publicly developed for ramp metering, incident resolution and management and data fusion
  • Establish social networking for this community of practice (e.g. Linked In)
  • Use outreach and branding to prioritize efficient operations
  • Further develop & Research performance measurement
    • Operations/maintenance agencies
    • Planning (MPO)
    • Research/Academic) organizations
  • Create or contrast agency thresholds
    • Eliminate HOV bypass at ramp meters
    • Increase HOV Occupancy
    • Meters considered on System Interchange Ramps
  • Emphasize customer focus in advanced traveler information
    • provide real-time traffic and travel choices
    • provide feedback on those choices effectiveness
  • Develop open and trusting relationships with private news media
  • Develop a “core” base list of elements for small jurisdictions
    • Detection, monitoring, messaging and operations centers,
    • operational protocols for incident detection
    • work zone coordination
  • Pursue collaboration and coordination to meet public expectation
    • Highway
    • Transit
    • Parking
    • Enforcement
    • Planning



U of MD




Port Authority NY/NJ






Alameda County



Michigan DOT