Published on January 17, 2008
Creating a Statewide Modeling System in Virginia: Creating a Statewide Modeling System in Virginia Presentation for the 11th TRB National Transportation Planning Applications Conference May 7, 2007 Slide2: Outline Overview of Modeling in Virginia Creating the Virginia Transportation Modeling (VTM) System Implementation of VTM System Lessons Learned Slide3: Travel Demand Modeling in Virginia: 1960-Early 1990’s 1960-1970’s: Extensive Survey Work and several 3 and 4-step models created. Models run on mainframe computers. 1980’s: Models switched from Mainframe to MINUTP and TRANPLAN software. Technical Transportation Planners wear many hats including Travel Demand Modeling Early 1990’s: Decline in VDOT in house modeling capability as many technical transportation planning staff knowledgeable about travel demand modeling move on to other jobs or retire. Modeling Needs begin to increase significantly. Slide4: Travel Demand Modeling in Virginia: Mid 1990’s – Early 2000’s Modeling Needs Continue to Increase Air Quality Conformity Transit, Toll, and Freight Seven new models Number of Models maintained by VDOT more than doubles Number of VDOT Staff doing modeling work decreases Many problems with consultant led modeling projects Slide5: Travel Demand Modeling in Virginia: Early 2000’s - Present 2003: Creation of New VDOT Central Office Modeling Group 2004: Modeling Group begins work on VTM Modeling System 2005: VTM Model User’s Group Created 2006: VTM Modeling System Policy & Procedures Manual Completed Implementation of VTM Modeling System begins Most models moved to a common software platform and format: CUBE Voyager State/MPO Modeling Staff increase after several years of decline Modeling needs continue to increase Slide6: VDOT Central Office Slide7: Why Did VDOT Decide to Create a Statewide Model System? Efficiency Consistency Easier to Maintain and Train Quicker Turnaround on Model Requests Technically Defensible Move Towards Best Practice Large Model Regions: Advanced 4-Step Small Model Regions: Basic 3 or 4-Step Renewed focus on Project Level Forecasting Slide8: What type of Modeling System to Create? How comprehensive should it be? How high should standards be? How standardized do models need to be? How to balance needs between small and large urban areas? How to make system flexible to handle future needs? Slide9: Development Process Initially: Limited Outreach VDOT Central Office Modeling Staff Eventually: Collaborative Effort VDOT Central Office Modeling Staff VDOT Central Office Planning Staff VDOT District Modeling Staff VDOT District Planning Staff Planning District Commissions Metropolitan Planning Organizations Creation of Virginia Transportation Modeling (VTM) User’s Group Slide10: Virginia Transportation Modeling (VTM) System Comprehensive Minimum Guidelines & Standards All Urban Area models Full Range of Travel Demand Modeling activities: Inputs to Analysis Some Standardization Software Acceptable Procedures File Names Transportation Network Attributes Higher Standards for Large vs. Small Model Regions Acceptable vs. Recommended Practice Maintain some Flexibility Guidelines vs. Standards Possible to go above and beyond minimum guidelines & standards Slide11: Existing Travel Demand Modeling Regions Slide12: Future Travel Demand Modeling Regions Slide13: Policies and Procedures Manual Slide14: Examples from Policy and Procedures Manual: TAZs Slide15: Policy and Procedures Manual: Mode Choice Slide16: Policy and Procedures Manual: Guidelines for Cutline Analysis Slide17: Policy and Procedures Manual: Dynamic Validation Slide18: Implementation Process Work in Progress: Improving Land Use Forecasting Process Moving all models to common software format: Citilabs CUBE Voyager Catalogs Transportation Network Standardization Linking Transportation Networks with GIS and State Traffic Databases Multi-year Effort Five Year Plan: FY 2007 – FY 2012 Large Data Collection Efforts Planned NHTS Survey Add-Ons Statewide External Station Surveys Slide19: Lessons Learned It takes a Village Collaborative Effort Needed Partnership: VDOT, Planning District Commissions, MPOs, and State Universities Extensive Outreach and Education about Travel Demand Modeling Needed Rome was not built in a day Initial Efforts were too Ambitious Do not overextend Staff Resources Measuring Expectations Balancing Development vs. Application Needs Coordination with Air Quality Conformity schedules Coordination with CLRP and Corridor Study schedules Questions?: Questions?