American Society of Civil Engineers


Toll Plaza Merging Traffic Control for Throughput Maximization


by Anastasia D. Spiliopoulou, (Research Assistant, Dynamic Systems and Simulation Laboratory, Dept. of Production Engineering and Management, Technical Univ. of Crete, 73100 Chania, Greece. E-mail: natasa@dssl.tuc.gr), Ioannis Papamichail, (Lecturer, Dynamic Systems and Simulation Laboratory, Dept. of Production Engineering and Management, Technical Univ. of Crete, 73100 Chania, Greece. E-mail: ipapa@dssl.tuc.gr), and Markos Papageorgiou, (Professor, Dynamic Systems and Simulation Laboratory, Dept. of Production Engineering and Management, Technical Univ. of Crete, 73100 Chania, Greece. E-mail: markos@dssl.tuc.gr)

Journal of Transportation Engineering, Vol. 136, No. 1, January 2010, pp. 67-76, (doi:  http://dx.doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)0733-947X(2010)136:1(67))

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Document type: Journal Paper
Section Heading: Transportation Systems
Abstract: A simple real-time merging traffic control concept is proposed for efficient toll plaza management in cases where the total flow exiting from the toll booths exceeds the capacity of the downstream highway (or bridge, or tunnel), leading to congestion and reduced efficiency due to capacity drop. Merging traffic control aims at maintaining the number of vehicles in the merge area close to a critical value that maximizes throughput; to this end, an algorithm known from local ramp metering operations is proposed (ALINEA). The potential control concept efficiency is demonstrated by use of microscopic simulation applied to a particular toll plaza infrastructure with and without merging traffic control. It is shown that the employed feedback regulator is little sensitive to various settings which indicates easy applicability with low fine-tuning needs in potential field applications. The case of partially uncontrolled lanes (e.g., for high-occupancy vehicles, buses or other vehicles) is also addressed.


ASCE Subject Headings:
Toll roads
Traffic management
Flow control
Feedback control
Adaptive systems

Author Keywords:
Toll roads
Traffic management
Flow control
Feedback control
Adaptive systems