Limited capital investment for major transportation improvements and growth in metropolitan areas require the most efficient use of the existing transportation system. Provisions of the Clean Air Act Amendments and TEA21 further intensify these concerns. One means to improve mobility is high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes. Although HOV lanes have been shown to be very successful in Texas, they have been met with skepticism in several areas across the country. Public criticism of HOV lanes in two corridors in New Jersey (IH-287 and IH-80) led to their closure. In the wake of the actions of New Jersey, legislation has been introduced in California to limit the implementation of new HOV lanes and to potentially remove existing HOV lanes. Inappropriate data, such as vehicle volumes, are used as a basis for removing the facilities. The states of Colorado, Virginia, and Georgia have also proposed legislation to either eliminate HOV lanes or convert them to high-occupancy toll (HOT) lanes. While some of the claims against HOV lanes may be justified, a need exists to evaluate new HOV lanes implemented in the Dallas area as well as to continue an evaluation of existing HOV lanes. While developers plan an extensive system of permanent HOV lanes for the Dallas-Fort Worth urbanized area, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) and Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) have pursued and continue to pursue short-term or interim HOV lane projects that would enhance public transportation and overall mobility. There are currently 48.2 miles of interim HOV lanes operational in the Dallas area, including a barrier-separated contraflow HOV lane on East R.L. Thornton Freeway (IH-30), buffer-separated concurrent flow HOV lanes on Stemmons Freeway (IH-35E North) and Lyndon B. Johnson Freeway (IH-635), and a barrier-separated reversible flow HOV lane on South R.L. Thornton (IH-35E South) connected to a buffer-separated concurrent flow HOV lane on Marvin D. Love (US-67). The objective of this research is to investigate the operational effectiveness of the Dallas area HOV lanes. Issues such as person movement, carpool formation, travel time savings, violation rates, safety, and project cost effectiveness are addressed. By understanding the operational performance and issues of both buffer-separated (concurrent flow) HOV lanes and barrier-separated (movable barrier contraflow or fixed barrier reversible flow) HOV lanes, recommendations can be made on suggested HOV lane implementation guidelines for the Dallas area.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Research Project Title: An Evaluation of Dallas Area HOV Lanes.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Texas Transportation Institute

    Texas A&M University System, 1600 E Lamar Boulevard
    Arlington, TX  United States  76011

    Texas Department of Transportation

    Research and Technology Implementation Office, P.O. Box 5080
    Austin, TX  United States  78763-5080
  • Authors:
    • Skowronek, Douglas A
    • Ranft, S E
    • Cothron, A S
  • Publication Date: 2002-8


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 84 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00962086
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: TX-02/4961-6,, Research Report 4961-6,, TTI: 7-4961
  • Contract Numbers: Project No. 7-4961
  • Created Date: Aug 15 2003 12:00AM