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Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Express Toll Lane Modeling Workshop Peer Review Report

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Disclaimer

The views expressed in this document do not represent the opinions of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and do not constitute an endorsement, recommendation, or specification by FHWA. The document is based solely on the discussions that took place during the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Express Toll Lane Modeling Blue Ribbon Panel Workshop and supporting technical documentation provided by FDOT, workshop invited speakers and participants.

1.2 Acknowledgements

FHWA and FDOT wish to acknowledge and thank the ten Blue Ribbon Panel Workshop peer review panel members for volunteering their time to participate in the review of the FDOT express toll lane modeling practices and for sharing their valuable experience and expertise.

The Peer Review Panel Members were:

Brief biographies for each of the peer review panel members are presented in Appendix C.

1.3 Report Purpose

This report summarizes the FDOT Express Toll Lane Modeling Blue Ribbon Panel Workshop that was held on May 22-23, 2013 at the Florida Turnpike Enterprise headquarters in Orlando, Florida. The workshop was supported in part by the Travel Model Improvement Program (TMIP) and sponsored by the FHWA.

Given the increasing complexities of travel forecasting practices and the growing demands by decision-makers for information about varying policy alternatives, it is essential that travel forecasting practitioners have the opportunity to share their experiences and insights. The TMIP-supported peer review program provides a forum for this important knowledge and information exchange.

A peer review and/or peer exchange workshop can serve multiple purposes. This review in particular focused on providing advice and recommended technical guidance for a new managed-lane model design, as well as specifications for a consistent modeling practice for express lane implementation resulting from an increased emphasis on managed lanes as a required alternative for analysis in major capacity improvement studies on existing limited access highways in the State of Florida. The Systems Planning Office has recently started a program for developing a planning-level managed lane modeling application for the Florida Standard Urban Transportation Model Structure[1] (FSUTMS). Therefore, FDOT convened the Blue Ribbon Panel Workshop in order to:

  1. Seek assistance in specifying the required elements of a common travel model framework,
  2. Identify parameters and sensitivities for demand modeling in both express toll lane planning and operations, and
  3. Define the relationships between regional travel demand, tolling, and microsimulation modeling.

The panel spent the morning session of Day One of the workshop listening to presentations by FDOT planning staff, national experts, and other invited speakers, which culminated in a set of specific questions from FDOT and its planning partners. The second half of Day One of the workshop was spent discussing those questions in two separate break-out sessions (the Planning Session and the Operations Session) and asking the panel members to provide their recommendations. The results of that discussion, in the form of comments and observations from the panel, are presented in this workshop documentation report.

FDOT and its partner agencies will carefully assess the feedback from the workshop panel when prioritizing the final model development implementation plan. While the advice of the peers is invaluable, there are many factors to work through when considering a model improvement strategy. Therefore, the peer recommendations should be regarded as suggestions for FDOT and its partners to consider rather than prescriptions to be followed.

1.4 Report Organization

This report is organized into the following sections:

  1. Introduction - introduces the peer review workshop panel and this resulting report.
  2. Overview and Background - gives an introduction to FDOT's planning responsibilities and the agency's goals for the peer review.
  3. FDOT's Current Managed Lane Modeling Practice - this section provides a historical context of express toll lane modeling at FDOT, including past and current modeling approaches.
  4. FDOT's Charge to Peer Review Panel - the specific technical questions posed by the host agency to be considered and addressed by the panel.
  5. Issues and Key Concepts for Express Toll Lane Demand Forecasting - a summary of issues to be considered in demand forecasting.
  6. Issues and Key Concepts for Express Toll Lane Operational Analysis - a summary of issues to be considered in operational analysis.
  7. Panel Discussion and Observations - peer review panel responses to the FDOT questions posed during the workshop.

In addition, the report includes a Number of Appendices:

Appendix A - List of Workshop Participants

Appendix B - Workshop Meeting Agenda

Appendix C - Peer Review Panel Biographies

Appendix D - Presentation Summaries


Updated: 10/20/2015
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