Relationship of Lane Width to Saturation Flow Rate on Urban and Suburban Signalized Intersection Approaches

An understanding of the relationship between lane width and traffic operations is important in making decisions concerning urban and suburban arterials. A number of geometric elements, including lane width, affect the saturation flow rate at an intersection on an urban or suburban arterial. Several studies have been conducted to evaluate the relationship between lane width and saturation flow rate at intersections. This research investigates the relationship between lane width and saturation flow rate on urban and suburban signalized intersection approaches using field study sites with the most ideal conditions possible. The research indicates that saturation flow rate varies with lane width. Average saturation flow rate was found to be in the range from 1,736 to 1,752 pc/h/ln for 2.9-m (9.5-ft) lanes, in the range from 1,816 to 1,836 pc/h/ln for 3.3- to 3.6-m (11- to 12-ft) lanes, and in the range from 1,898 to 1,913 pc/h/l for lane widths of 4.0 m (13 ft) or greater. These measured saturation flow rate values are generally lower than those currently used in the "Highway Capacity Manual" (HCM). Furthermore, the percent difference in saturation flow rate between sites with 2.9- and 3.6-m (9.5- and 12-ft) lanes was found to be about half the value used in the HCM.


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  • Accession Number: 01049619
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 9780309104548
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Feb 8 2007 7:49PM