Applying Analysis Tools in Planning for Operations: Case Study #4 – Application of Microsimulation in Combination With Travel Demand Models

More and more, transportation system operators are seeing the benefits of strengthening links between planning and operations. A critical element in improving transportation decision-making and the effectiveness of transportation systems related to operations and planning is through the use of analysis tools and methods. This brochure is one in a series of five intended to improve the way existing analysis tools are used to advance operational strategies in the planning process. The specific objective of developing this informational brochure series was to provide reference and resource materials that will help planners and operations professionals to use existing transportation planning and operations analysis tools and methods in a more systematic way to better analyze, evaluate, and report the benefits of needed investments in transportation operations. The main problem of interfacing travel demand models with microsimulation models is that the demands produced by demand models are not as capacity constrained as they need to be for use in microsimulation models. The result is that the microsimulation model produces unrealistic facility performance estimates when it is given unrealistic calibration year and future year demands. The solution is to adjust the travel demand model demands to more realistic levels that reflect the physical limitations of the network. This brochure describes two case studies for applying simulation models in combination with travel demand models: 1) the traditional approach performing these adjustments outside of the travel demand model; and 2) an advanced approach that makes many of the demand adjustments within the demand model.

  • Record URL:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Dowling Associates, Incorporated

    180 Grand Avenue, Suite 250
    Oakland, CA  United States  94612-3774

    Cambridge Systematics, Incorporated

    555 12th Street, Suite 1600
    Oakland, CA  United States  94607-3616

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Dowling, Richard
    • Huang, Allen
    • Sterner, Kym
    • Jeannotte, Krista
  • Publication Date: 2009-9


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Edition: Brochure
  • Features: Figures; Maps;
  • Pagination: 20p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01147293
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: FHWA-HOP-10-005
  • Contract Numbers: DTFH61-05-C-00036
  • Files: TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Dec 24 2009 4:07PM