Over the last several years, a great deal of attention has been given to a variety of intelligent vehicle highway system (IVHS) technologies that have the potential to significantly reduce traffic congestion, improve safety, and reduce energy consumption and air pollution in a variety of urban and intercity traffic environments. These studies have typically focused on the characteristics of technology, using small field demonstrations more to test operational feasibility than to determine potential impacts. As a result, this "supply" approach to the technologies does not generate a clear understanding of either market potential or overall impact on traffic flow. This paper develops national estimates of the overall potential of these technologies to impact traffic flow and congestion in a variety of circumstances. The paper uses national statistics on travel in rural, urban and intercity environments, coupled with descriptions of the most promising IVHS technologies. Projections of market adoption and regular use are made, referring to recent delphi-based assessments and market surveys of the technologies' potential. If IVHS technologies were substantially developed in the top 10 cities, only 0.3 - 0.5% of national congestion would be alleviated. At moderate (25%) usage rates in all urban areas, about 5% of congestion is removed. In general, at least 50% of the urban travel market will have to adopt, and use, IVHS technology if a significant change in congestion is to be observed. If these rates are achievable, then the Federal Government's subsidy of IVHS could be justifiable and cost effective.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Prepared for presentation at the Conference on Vehicle Navigation and Information Systems, Ann Arbor, Michigan, October 1991 and the Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C., January 1992.
  • Corporate Authors:

    University of North Carolina, Charlotte

    Department of Geography and Earth Sciences
    9201 University City Boulevard
    Charlotte, NC  United States  28223
  • Authors:
    • Bruce, E L
    • Hartgen, D T
  • Publication Date: 1991-7


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Appendices; Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 21 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00716883
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: TPR No. 53
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Feb 28 1996 12:00AM