Event Date:
May 11, 2012
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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Abstract: Models are used for many different purposes. Some seek to impart understanding of the system under study, while others seeks to understand dynamics. Most of the models considered in this course are also used for forecasting likely future levels of demand and its impact upon the built and natural environment. Unlike models of purely physical systems these models attempt to capture the interactions between people and institutions. Social systems are considerably more complex and chaotic. They are shaped by disruptive technologies, changing markets, economic cycles, and cultural influences that a difficult to predict, much less their subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) interaction effects. Uncertainty creeps into forecasting as a result, creating risk that a policy or investment may have unintended consequences, under-perform, or be short-lived. Transportation and land use modelers have typically only weakly accommodated such realities in their forecasts. Policy-makers and investors are increasingly demanding a more explicit accounting of risk and uncertainty in forecasting. This discussion will focus on how this will affect the practice of modeling in the future.

Speaker Bio: Rick Donnelly has over 25 years of experience in the modeling and simulation of transportation systems, from the urban to national level. His current interests include agent-based modeling of...

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Event Date:
May 25, 2012
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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Abstract: Climate change may be the most serious and urgent issue facing the transportation sector. Transportation is both a major producer of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and is also vulnerable to the consequences of climate change. Major reductions in GHG emissions from the transportation sector will be needed in order to avoid the most serious effects of climate change. Travel models can play an important role in evaluating strategies for reducing transportation sector GHG emissions, but prevailing travel models do not address a number of factors that significantly affect GHG emissions. The GreenSTEP model was developed to fill this gap. The model estimates household level vehicle travel, energy consumption, and GHG emissions. GreenSTEP is currently being used to assist the development of ODOT's Statewide Transportation Strategy for reducing GHG emissions and Metro's Climate Smart Communities scenario planning process.

Speaker Bio: Brian Gregor is a senior transportation analyst for the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) where for the past 15 years he has worked on a variety of transportation and land use modeling and analysis projects. He is the principal developer of the GreenSTEP and Land Use Scenario DevelopeR (LUSDR) models. He has also worked on the development and application of Oregon's Statewide Integrated Model (SWIM), lead the automation of ODOT's modeling...

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Event Date:
Jun 01, 2012
Content Type: Professional Development Event

The video begins at 2:09.

Abstract: The ability to fully understand and accurately characterize freight route choice is one that will support freight modeling frameworks, and regional and state transportation decisions. This ability, when combined with regional and state commodity flow data, can compose an effective statewide freight modeling framework. Typically, transportation network models take a shortest path assumption for truck routing both for strategic and operational routing decisions. The goal of this research was to determining how different subgroups of shippers, carriers, and receivers make route choices, and to understand how these approaches vary across types of routing decisions. We consider route changes of both a spatial and temporal manner. This talk presents the results of a survey of over 800 shippers, carriers, and receivers in Washington State, and recommends a framework for improving the modeling of routing decisions in existing network models.

Speaker Bio: Professor Anne Goodchild has worked and studied in the transportation field for more than 15 years. Her initial experience in management consulting for transportation providers was followed by the completion of a PhD at UC Berkeley and research experience while developing the freight transportation program at the University of Washington. In addition to a BS in mathematics and an MS and PhD in Civil Engineering, Dr....

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Event Date:
Jun 08, 2012
Content Type: Professional Development Event

The video begins at 0:52.

Abstract:  This seminar concludes the eight week exploration of transportation models and decision tools with a look to the future. Oregon is known for its history of forward thinking policies around sustainable transportation, including linking land use and transportation planning at the regional level, investments in transit and non-motorized modes, and statewide legislation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. To aid these transportation planning and policy decisions, Oregon has developed some of the most sophisticated models and analytic tools currently in use in the United States. As Oregon moves forward to address the next set of challenges - energy security, climate change, economic constraints and equity, models will need to provide new information at different spatial and temporal scales to support long range planning - 30 to 50 years out - as well as near term decisions - 1 to 5 years ahead. Beth Wemple, a Portland-based consultant with Cambridge Systematics, will share her view on Oregon's transportation future. Keith Lawton, consultant and former transportation planner at Metro, will respond by discussing the next steps for model development and application needed to support this agenda.

Speaker Bio: Keith Lawton is a transport modeling consultant and past Director of Technical services, Metro Planning Department, Portland, OR. He has been active in model...

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Event Date:
Nov 09, 2012
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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Abstract: The combination of increasing challenges in administering household travel surveys as well as advances in global positioning systems (GPS) and geographic information systems (GIS) technologies motivated this project. It tests the feasibility of using a passive travel data collection methodology in a complex urban environment, by developing GIS algorithms to automatically detect travel modes and trip purposes. The study was conducted in New York City where the multi-dimensional challenges include urban canyon effects, an extremely dense and diverse set of land use patterns, and a complex transit network. Our study uses a multi-modal transportation network, a set of rules to achieve both complexity and flexibility for travel mode detection, and develops procedures and models for trip end clustering and trip purpose prediction. The study results are promising, reporting success rates ranging from 60% to 95%, suggesting that in the future, conventional self-reported travel surveys may be supplemented, or even replaced, by passive data collection methods.

Speaker Bio: Cynthia Chen is an associate professor in the department of civil and environmental engineering at the University of Washington. She obtained her Ph.D in civil and environmental engineering...

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Event Date:
Nov 30, 2012
Content Type: Professional Development Event

The video begins at 4:30.

The San Francisco Bay Area, like other metropolitan regions in California, is in the process of developing regional plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in response to state legislation that sets targets for such reduction, and prescribes that Metropolitan Planning Organizations develop Sustainable Communities Strategies that leverage changes in land use patterns in combination with transportation investments, that will meet those targets. This talk describes the land use modeling that is being used, in combination with the activity-based transportation model system at the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, to analyze alternative combinations of land use policies and transportation policies. It also will demonstrate visualization technology that has been developed to facilitate community engagement in the process

Speaker Bio: Paul Waddell is Professor and Chair of the City and Regional Planning Department at the University of California, Berkeley. He teaches and conducts research on land use and transportation modeling and planning. He designed and leads the development of the UrbanSim land use modeling platform, now being used in metropolitan planning organizations across the U.S., and in research projects throughout the world.

Event Date:
Dec 07, 2012
Content Type: Professional Development Event

Special Seminar: Room 315 of the Maseeh College of Engineering & Computer Science on the Portland State University campus.

Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise has completed planning studies to forecast the revenue earning potential of tolled special use lanes along Interstates in Florida. The tolled special use lanes or “Managed Lanes” will be contained within the interior of the Interstates' highway corridors. The Managed Lanes concept has been incorporated into larger widening projects in Central and South Florida, which is under development by the Florida Department of Transportation. The presentation will focus on the approach and methodology for estimating traffic and revenue for Express Toll Lanes in an existing limited access corridor. The core content is the required data, traffic modeling efforts, and how the results are used by the Finance Department to estimate potential revenues.

Bio: Jack Klodzinski received his Bachelors’, Master’s and Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Central Florida where his focus was on toll road operations. He is now the Travel Forecast Manager at Florida’s Turnpike for the URS Corporation where his main focus is on traffic forecasting for toll facilities. He works with a team of modelers to produce toll traffic forecasts used in roadway design, operations, or future revenue estimates. Jack also stays active with UCF as a Graduate Faculty Scholar for the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Construction...

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Event Date:
Nov 01, 2013
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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Summary: Ten new megatrends will be presented with a discussion on the resulting shifts on the transportation industry. Details will include a look on broken trends and the new challenges introduced for transportation planning. Thoughts will also be presented introducing a pivot to the current model being pursued by the Connected Vehicle program. Finally, planners will be challenged to consider a new question for the future of our connected communities, you have to come to hear it.

Bio: Ted Trepanier is the Senior Director for the Public Sector with INRIX, Inc.  Prior to joining INRIX, Ted was the Director of Traffic Operations for the Washington State Department of Transportation.  In addition to his extensive background in traffic operations, he has experience in design, planning, project management and toll operations. Ted earned his Bachelor's Degree in Civil Engineering from Washington State University and Masters in Civil Engineering from the University of Washington.

Event Date:
Sep 28, 2012
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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The modelling of dependence relations between random variables is a typically studied subject in probability theory and statistics. In the recent decade, the concept of copula gained enormous success in finance and economics in the risk management and analysis context. Engineers started investigating the applications of copula in recent years; it has been widely used in Hydrology and climate studies to model rainfall and overspill risk. As a powerful tool to model dependence, copula has been applied to travel behavior modeling and model choice by several researchers. Dr. Wang will share his understanding of copula and its implications to engineers and planners in a more general uncertainty modeling framework. Some of the ongoing research efforts regarding how copula is being applied to transportation network entrance-ramp flow dependency and spatial-temporal travel time reliability study at Oregon State University.

Speaker Bio: Dr. Wang recently joined OSU from the Trine University in Angola, Indiana where he worked as assistant professor with the Reiners Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Before joining Trine University, he spent a short time as a research associate with Institute for Multimodal...

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Event Date:
Feb 01, 2013
Content Type: Professional Development Event

The video begins at 0:49.

It has been nearly 25 years since non-motorized modes and non-motorized-specific built environment measures were first included in the regional travel demand models of metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs). Such modeling practices have evolved considerably as data collection and analysis methods improve, decisions-makers demand more policy-responsive tools, and walking and cycling grow in popularity. Many models now explicitly consider the unique characteristics of walking travel, separate from travel by bicycle. As MPOs look to enhance their models’ representations of pedestrian travel, the need to understand current and emerging practice is great.

This project presents a comprehensive review of the practice of representing walking in MPO travel models. A review of model documentation determined that – as of mid-2012 – 63% (30) of the 48 largest MPOs included non-motorized travel in their regional models, while 47% (14) of those also distinguished between walk and bicycle modes. The modeling frameworks, model structures, and variables used for pedestrian and non-motorized regional modeling are described and discussed. A survey of MPO staff members revealed barriers to modeling non-motorized travel, including insufficient travel survey records, but also innovations being implemented, including smaller zones and non-motorized network assignment. Finally, best practices...

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