Benefit

HOV to HOT lane conversions can improve travel times and travel time reliability in Express Lanes although impacts on general purpose lanes are mixed.

Evaluating congestion reduction strategies in four large metropolitan areas.


05/01/2015
I-10,Los Angeles,California,United States; I-110,Los Angeles,California,United States; I-95,Miami,Florida,United States; I-35W,Minneapolis,Minnesota,United States


Summary Information

This report examined cross-cutting findings and overall lessons learned from six U.S. DOT Urban Partnership Agreement (UPA) demonstration projects in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, San Francisco, and Seattle. The overall objectives at each site were to improve tolling (congestion pricing), enhance transit, emphasize telecommuting and travel demand management (TDM), and implement advanced technology.

A variety of congestion reduction strategies were implemented between 2008 and 2013. Four UPA sites (Atlanta, Los Angeles, Miami, and Minneapolis) converted high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes to high-occupancy-toll (HOT) lanes using demand-based pricing, one site (Seattle) deployed demand-based pricing on a bridge, and two cities (San Francisco and Los Angeles) implemented demand-based parking pricing. In addition, five sites (Atlanta, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, and Seattle) implemented TDM to enhance ridesharing on tolled facilities, and a telework program was implemented in Minneapolis.

Methodology

A before and after data collection approach was used to evaluate impacts on commuters and other stakeholders, operations, and the environment. Evaluators relied on data collected from local partners.

Mobility and Congestion Reduction Analysis

The congestion analysis used four main measures: average travel time, average travel speed, and travel time reliability (travel time index and buffer index). The travel time index used a comparison between peak period travel conditions and free-flow conditions. The buffer index represented the amount of extra time needed to allow for on-time arrival.

Data limitations were encountered at all sites, influencing the ability of evaluators to analyze measures and identify changes in congestion. In some cases, traffic sensors were not working due to construction activities, and in other cases additional lanes were constructed making comparisons with before data more difficult.

Findings

Atlanta I-85 Southbound (A.M. Peak Period Peak Direction) Trip-time reliability on Express Lanes decreased slightly while trip-time reliability on General Purpose Lanes increased. Travel times on Express Lanes decreased slightly while travel times on General Purpose Lanes increased slightly.

General Purpose Freeway Lanes Pre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Time16.1 minutes16.9 minutes+0.80 minutes
Mean Travel Speed46.1 mi/hr 43.9 mi/hr -2.20 mi/hr
Travel-Time Index1.391.46+0.07
Buffer Index77%66%-11%

HOV/HOT LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Time14.1 minutes13.8 minutes-0.30 minutes
Mean Travel Speed50.1 mi/hr 51.5 mi/hr +1.4 mi/hr
Travel-Time Index1.281.25-0.30
Buffer Index44%57%+13%

Los Angeles I-110 Northbound (A.M. Peak Period Peak Direction) Travel time reliability on Express Lanes decreased while travel time reliability on General Purpose Lanes increased. Travel times on Express Lanes increased while travel times on General Purpose Lanes were relatively unchanged.

General Purpose Freeway LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Time27.09 minutes27.07 minutes-0.02 minutes
Buffer Index51%48%-3%

HOV/HOT LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Time12.40 minutes14.29 minutes+1.90 minutes
Buffer Index43%85%+42%

Los Angeles I-10 Westbound (A.M. Peak Period Peak Direction) Travel time reliability on both Express Lanes and General Purpose Lanes increased. Travel times on Express Lanes decreased slightly while travel times on General Purpose Lanes increased slightly.

General Purpose Freeway LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Time30.88 minutes33.90 minutes+3.02 minutes
Buffer Index57%34%-23%

HOV/HOT LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Time15.96 minutes15.08 minutes-0.85 minutes
Buffer Index40%26%-14%

Miami I-95 (A.M. Peak Period Peak Direction) Travel time reliability in Express Lanes increased. Travel speeds in Express Lanes increased from approximately 20 mi/hr during the pre-deployment period to 64 mi/hr in the post-deployment period, while travel speeds in the General Purpose Lanes increased from approximately 15 mi/hr to 51 mi/hr. In addition, total person throughput for the Express Lanes and the General Purpose Lanes increased by approximately 21 percent.

General Purpose Freeway LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Speed15 mi/hr51 mi/hr+36 mi/hr

HOV/HOT LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Speed20 mi/hr64 mi/hr+44 mi/hr

Minneapolis I-35 section south of I-494 Only (A.M. Peak Period Peak Direction) Travel time reliability and vehicle throughput increased in the MnPASS Express Lanes. Travel times decreased in General Purpose Lanes.

General Purpose Freeway LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Time18.9 minutes16.8 minutes-2.10 minutes
Mean Travel Speed50.7 mi/hr55.3 mi/hr+4.6 mi/hr
Buffer Index100%70%-30%

HOV/HOT LanesPre-DeploymentPost-DeploymentChange
Mean Travel Time6.4 minutes6.0 minutes-0.4 minutes
Mean Travel Speed67.2 mi/hr65.7 mi/hr-1.5 mi/hr
Buffer Index40%20%-20%

Benefit Comments

No comments posted to date

Comment on this Benefit

To comment on this summary, fill in the information below and click on submit. An asterisk (*) indicates a required field. Your name and email address, if provided, will not be posted, but are to contact you, if needed to clarify your comments.



Source

Contemporary Approaches to Congestion Pricing: Lessons Learned from the National Evaluation of Congestion Pricing Strategies at Six Sites

Author: Zimmerman, Carol (Zimmerman Consulting); Rachel Klein; Jeremy Schroeder (Battelle); Brian Pessaro (University of South Florida); Mark Burris; Katie Turnbull (TTI); Barbara Joy (Earth Matters); Eric Schreffler (ESTC)

Published By: U.S. DOT Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration

Source Date: 05/01/2015

Other Reference Number: Report No. FHWA-JPO-2015-217

URL: https://rosap.ntl.bts.gov/view/dot/3555

Rating

Average User Rating

0 ( ratings)

Rate this Benefit

(click stars to rate)


Goal Areas

Mobility

Typical Deployment Locations

Metropolitan Areas

Keywords

high occupancy vehicles, carpool lanes, high occupancy vehicle lane, managed lanes, HOV, congestion pricing, value pricing, variable road pricing

Benefit ID: 2016-01093