Nov 25, 2014

In the Engineering Building, Room 315

Abstract: Signal priority applications in the U.S. tend to be timid about giving priority to buses, because if they interrupt the green period of a competing traffic stream, they have no means of compensating that stream in the next signal cycle (by giving it a longer green period). Common restrictions set up to protect cross streets include preventing a priority interruption in consecutive signal cycles, having short extension intervals, and inhibiting priority when traffic is heavy on the cross street. In addition, most priority applications are limited to one or two simple control tactics, green extension and early green. As a result of these limitations, transit signal priority often falls far short of its potential, saving buses 3 seconds or less per intersection. We show how by using multiple intelligent signal priority tactics, in which traffic is aggressively interrupted but also compensated in the following cycle, large benefits can accrue to transit operations without any undue effect on general traffic. In a simulation study of four traffic signals around a large bus terminal in Boston, we found that average delay per bus could be reduced by almost 20 seconds per intersection with no change in average motorist delay.

Nov 25, 2014

The video begins at 4:15.

Abstract: The California High-Speed Rail Ridership and Revenue Forecasting Model is a state-of-the-practice transportation model designed to portray what future conditions might look like in California with and without a high-speed train. The model was developed by Cambridge Systematics, Inc., and took roughly two years to complete. The resulting ridership and revenue forecasts provided, and continue to provide, sound information for planning decisions for high-speed rail in California. This presentation briefly describes the underlying model that was developed to generate the ridership and revenue forecasts along with summaries of ridership forecasts from published reports.

Nov 25, 2014

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The video begins at 2:46.

Promising Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Strategies for the Transportation Sector: Low Carbon Fuels, Leveraging Transit with Smart Growth, and Ports and Goods Movement Opportunities

Nov 25, 2014

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Abstract: Our speaker for May 14, 2010 is Gill V. Hicks, Director Southern California Operations for Cambridge Systematics, Inc.  For more than ten years, Mr. Hicks served as the General Manager of the Alameda Corridor Transportation Authority (ACTA).  The $2.4 billion Alameda Corridor consolidated harbor-related railroad traffic onto a single 20-mile corridor between the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach and the railroad mainlines near downtown Los Angeles.  Mr. Hicks’ responsibilities included overall management of the agency, building consensus, estimating benefits and costs of the project, generating political support, testifying before U.S. Congress, State Legislature, regulatory bodies, city councils, funding agencies and other stakeholders; developing a financial plan, raising funds, coordinating with railroad, trucking, and shipping businesses, and managing contracts for the project.

Mr. Hicks will discuss the major challenges faced by the project, including negotiations with three competing railroads, several municipal governments, utilities, regulatory agencies, contractors, and funding entities.  The process for consensus building will be discussed. Major lessons learned will be described, including methods for reducing project risk, keeping on schedule and within budget. Mr. Hicks will also touch on the challenges facing the agency as...

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Nov 24, 2014

The video begins at 1:26.

Abstract: How do commuter rail riders choose access modes? This presentation discusses the results of an analysis of access mode choice by riders of one of the first U.S. suburb-to-suburb commuter railroads, the Westside Express Service (WES) in the Portland, Oregon metropolitan area. The study uses on-board survey data collected by the region’s transit agency, Tri-Met, during WES’s first year of operation. The data include observed access mode choices, historical mode usage, and subjective assessment of WES attributes. A hierarchical choice model was estimated, using attributes of the access trip and station areas as well as rider characteristics. The estimation results showed evidence of pre-WES mode inertia effects in choosing drive access, pro-sustainability attitudes in choosing bike access, the importance of comfort for light rail and auto access modes, as well as strong positive station-area effects of connecting bus lines and parking space provision. The hierarchical choice model revealed significant substitution effects between drive and light rail modes and between bike and walk modes. This study provides potentially valuable insights to agencies for the purposes of station-area planning and targeted marketing efforts.

Nov 24, 2014

The video begins at 2:58.

Abstract: While TriMet and other transit agencies serve many commuters by having racks for bikes on trains and buses, large bike parking facilities in global capitals of urban bicycling provide the key link between bikes and transit. Following the lead of European and Asian cities, the Portland region is starting to develop a network of bike-transit facilities; TriMet is piloting smart bike parking technology in the form of electronic bike lockers and "Bike & Rides". This presentation discusses the background and planning for bike-transit integration in the region and shares insights into bike-transit travel patterns, habits, and market segmentation gained from recent rider surveys.

Nov 24, 2014

The video begins at 5:27.

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Abstract: Today, most streets are designed and managed to meet mobility standards that focus on the movement of motor vehicles, failing to adequately accommodate and prioritize transit, walking, and biking. A new culture of innovation is needed in transportation as traditional solutions alone will not suffice. By 2035, the Portland Plan envisions transportation facilities that are designed and managed to prioritize travel investments that improve walking, biking, and universal accessibility as the first priority.

In support of this vision, Peter Koonce, Manager of the City's Signals, Street Lighting, & ITS Division will discuss how he's looking to make the City's traffic signals consistent with these goals resulting in more effective integration of land use, transit, cycling, and walking. The discussion will be centered around research that is needed to improve our understanding of best practices from the U.S. and Europe for application in Portland.

Nov 24, 2014

The video begins at 2:15.

Abstract: If a two-dimensional picture is worth a 1,000 words, how much more can 3D imagery convey? As part of its recently completed Strategic Plan, Metro’s TOD Program in Portland, OR has developed a new GIS -based transit orientation tool to analyze and compare the readiness of its station areas and corridors for higher density mixed-use development.  For the purposes of better capturing a more holistic view of the built environment, this innovative measure expands on the 3 “D’s” of density, diversity, and design by adopting the 5 “P’s” of people, places, physical form, performance and pedestrian/bicycle connectivity. Given the program’s interest in catalyzing near-term private development, it goes further to incorporate a strong “market strength” component. In addition to describing the tool and its future implementation, the presentation will demonstrate how the TOD Program developed and used two- and three-dimensional maps and graphics to help convey the complex methodology and findings to a broad audience of policy makers and stakeholders.

Chris is a Senior TOD Project Manager with Metro’s TOD Program in Portland, OR. Along with managing public-private development projects near transit, he led the recently completed TOD Strategic Plan and is participating in corridor planning region-wide. Prior to Metro, Chris specialized in TOD in the public and private sectors.

Nov 24, 2014

The video begins at 1:39.

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Ronald Tamse is a traffic engineer for the city of Utrecht, The Netherlands. Ronald has been involved in traffic design in Amsterdam and Utrecht. He is most interested in bicycle and rail transportation. He has worked on the design of the Amsterdam subway, a light rail system in Utrecht, and is currently working on urban transportation solutions as Utrecht Centraal is redeveloped. Utrecht Centraal is the largest train station in The Netherlands.

Ronald will highlight key examples from Utrecht that show some new ideas, similarities between the Dutch and American approaches, as well as a few lessons imported from Portland. These examples will share highlights from major projects that include building a new commuter railway network, including the rebuilding of Utrecht Centraal railway station, and the development of a light rail line in Utrecht that uses MAX as a development model. In addition, Ronald will demonstrate the importance of connecting bike infrastructure through network planning, infrastructure, and connections to transit.

Nov 24, 2014

The video begins at 1:47.

Abstract: In transportation planning and engineering, market segments or groups of individuals with varying attitudes and travel behavior are often identified in order to define a set of policies and strategies targeted at each segment. Examples include residential location choice studies, electric vehicle adoption and the marketing of public transit options. Defining market segments is common in the marketing literature, typically based on observed socioeconomic characteristics, such as gender and income. However, in addition to these characteristics, travelers may also be segmented based on variations in their observed travel and activity patterns. The activity-based approach to travel demand analysis acknowledges the need to analyze the travel patterns of individuals, conceptualized as a trip chain or tour, as opposed to individual trip segments. This has implications for identifying markets segments based on travel patterns which needs to distinguish between the sequencing and timing of travel choices and activities, in addition to the actual travel choices and activities. One approach that holds promise is pattern recognition theory which has wide applications in image analysis, speech recognition and physiological signal processing. In this study, pattern recognition methods are applied to observed daily travel and activity patterns from Oregon to identify travel market...

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