Publications / 2019 Proceedings of the 36th ISARC, Banff, Alberta, Canada

Service Level Evaluation of Florida’s Highways Considering the Impact of Autonomous Vehicles

Amirsaman Mahdavian, Alireza Shojaei and Amr Oloufa
Pages 1163-1170 (2019 Proceedings of the 36th ISARC, Banff, Alberta, Canada)

Automated vehicles (AV) are undergoing development at a remarkable pace and have the potential to revolutionize the existing transportation system. The ASCE [1] evaluated the United States’ infrastructure as a D+ grade. Moreover, they predicted radical infrastructure investment gaps in the surface transportation sector in the upcoming years. Some new urbanized regions might require new highways. Meanwhile, many other highways are reaching the end of their service life and will need significant repairs or even replacement. However, this seems to be unrealistic to happen until having a high market penetration of Fully Connected and Autonomous vehicles on the road to benefit from the capacity expansion benefits. Regarding the funding related issues of highway construction in the U.S. and the emergence of AVs, having a better understanding of the future’s traffic status is a must. This study investigates the impact of autonomous vehicles on Florida’s district five of I-95 highway traffic including three counties: Flagler, Volusia, and Brevard. This research is the first study to develop a fusion model considering the impact of both traffic flow and capacity adjustments based on the literature review to forecast the traffic from 2020 to 2040 by considering the increasing AV market penetration. The proposed approach provides a more realistic plan for government agencies and private investors, and as a result, significant savings financially and resource-wise can be achieved. The findings of the study confirm that autonomous vehicles will increase traffic flow and capacity, and the increase in flow is higher than the increase in capacity.

Keywords: Autonomous Vehicles; Traffic Flow and Capacity; Long-term Planning; Highway