Open Toll Lanes in a Connected Vehicle Environment: Development of New Pricing Strategies for a Highly Dynamic and Distributed System

Options for highway tolling in a connected vehicle milieu were explored, where such vehicles are connected to the infrastructure with real-time access to system information. Managing toll lanes with congestion pricing is effective in addressing freeway traffic congestion, and the possibilities for congestion pricing in a connected vehicle milieu were explored by using both an analytical approach and by simulation. The analytical research employed an auction technique whereby connected automobile travelers use vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communication to bid for access to toll lanes. Access can occur at multiple points along the road and travelers can make multiple bids. The model explored the effect, on collected revenue, of varying the distribution of travelers’ value of time (VOT). Under the auction mechanism, the toll operator allows about one fifth of the bidders onto the toll road. This was consistent across different VOT distributions and varying road capacities. This proportion represents the toll operator’s accommodation between allowing more vehicles onto the road and maintaining the toll road's attractiveness to travelers. The less attractive, that is the less time saved, the less travelers are willing to pay for access. The results yielded both intuitive and unexpected outcomes. Creating a decrease in the capacity of the general-purpose road led to increase in demand for toll road access and more revenue for the toll operator. But lowering the capacity of the toll road had only a small effect, which indicates the robustness of the auction mechanism in response to variation in the distribution of traveler VOT. In addition to the analytical approach, a VISSIM microsimulation was developed to assess alternative bidding methods for toll lanes. The model involves a simple road network with two parallel routes to measure traffic distribution between a toll road and a general-purpose road. A pricing mechanism based on descending price was developed whereby transactions between travelers and the toll operator take place via V2I communication. Key components of this simulation test bed have been completed and are explained in this report.

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  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This document was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation, University Transportation Centers Program.
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    National Transportation Center at Maryland

    1124 Glenn Martin Hall
    University of Maryland
    College Park, MD  United States  20742

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

    University Transportation Centers Program
    Department of Transportation
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    Old Dominion University

    Virginia Modeling, Analysis, and Simulation Center
    1030 University Boulevard
    Suffolk, VA  United States  23435

    Old Dominion University

    Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 135 Kaufman Hall
    Norfolk, VA  United States  23529
  • Authors:
    • Cetin, Mecit
    • Collins, Andrew
    • Basar, Gulsevi
    • Frydenlund, Erika
    • Robinson, R Michael
  • Publication Date: 2015-2


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Edition: Final report
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 51p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01667375
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: NTC2014-SU-R-15
  • Created Date: Mar 13 2018 8:59AM