Building a Framework for Transportation Resiliency and Evaluating the Resiliency Benefits of Light Rail Transit in Denver, Colorado

This report presents a three-part research program examining transportation resiliency and the ability for a transportation system to maintain or return to a previous level of service after a disruptive, black swan type event. With transportation as the second highest household expenditure, it is vital to understand the disproportionate impact that a drastic increase in gas price might have on a major city and region. We seek to increase our understanding of resiliency, vulnerability, and transportation affordability issues by asking what would happen if the cost of driving suddenly doubled or tripled. Who is better off and why? How much difference does being near downtown or jobs make? What matters in terms of transit infrastructure? How much of a role do current travel behaviors play? The first part of the report examines a regional impact of a drastic fuel price increase. Using a multinomial logistic regression mode choice model developed with major travel surveys conducted for the Denver Metropolitan region in 1997 and 2008 – a time period over which gas prices more than tripled – the authors derive resiliency scenarios of driving cost increases of 1.5X, 2X, and 3X. The second part of the report focuses on city-scale resiliency by accounting for active transportation infrastructure in a detailed manner not feasible at the regional scale. The third part of this report develops a Transportation Economic Resilience (TER) rating system to help researchers, planners, and policy makers better understand resiliency and vulnerability across different geographical areas. The results of this report illustrate that transportation choice helps create network redundancy and facilitates adaptability under extreme conditions.

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  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This document was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation, University Transportation Centers Program.
  • Corporate Authors:

    University of Colorado, Denver

    Department of Civil Engineering
    1200 Larimer Street, P.O. Box 173364
    Denver, CO  United States  80217-3364

    Mountain-Plains Consortium

    North Dakota State University
    Fargo, ND  United States  58108

    Research and Innovative Technology Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Marshall, Wesley E
    • Henao, Alejandro
    • Bronson, Rachael
  • Publication Date: 2015-3


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Maps; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 78p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01557028
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: MPC 15-279
  • Created Date: Mar 16 2015 11:36AM