Optimal Integrated Dynamic Traffic Assignment and Signal Control for Evacuation of Large Traffic Networks with Varying Threat Levels
Network Flow Algorithms
Point-Queue and Spatial-Queue
System Optimal Dynamic Traffic Assignment
Traffic Signal Optimization
Cell Transmission Model
AdvisorHickman, Mark D.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis research contributes to the state of the art and state of the practice in solving a very important and computationally challenging problem in the areas of urban transportation systems, operations research, disaster management, and public policy. Being a very active topic of research during the past few decades, the problem of developing an efficient and practical strategy for evacuation of real-sized urban traffic networks in case of disasters from different causes, quickly enough to be employed in immediate disaster management scenarios, has been identified as one of the most challenging and yet vital problems by many researchers. More specifically, this research develops fast methods to find the optimal integrated strategy for traffic routing and traffic signal control to evacuate real-sized urban networks in the most efficient manner. In this research a solution framework is proposed, developed and tested which is capable of solving these problems in very short computational time. An efficient relaxation-based decomposition method is proposed, implemented for two evacuation integrated routing and signal control model formulations, proven to be optimal for both formulations, and verified to reduce the computational complexity of the optimal integrated routing and signal control problem. The efficiency of the proposed decomposition method is gained by reducing the integrated optimal routing and signal control problem into a relaxed optimal routing problem. This has been achieved through an insight into intersection flows in the optimal routing solution: in at least one of the optimal solutions of the routing problem, each street during each time interval only carries vehicles in at most one direction. This property, being essential to the proposed decomposition method, is called "unidirectionality" in this dissertation. The conditions under which this property exists in the optimal evacuation routing solution are identified, and the existence of unidirectionality is proven for: (1) the common Single-Destination System-Optimal Dynamic Traffic Assignment (SD-SODTA) problem, with the objective to minimize the total time spent in the threat area; and, (2) for the single-destination evacuation problem with varying threat levels, with traffic models that have no spatial queue propagation. The proposed decomposition method has been implemented in compliance with two widely-accepted traffic flow models, the Cell Transmission Model (CTM) and the Point Queue (PQ) model. In each case, the decomposition method finds the optimal solution for the integrated routing and signal control problem. Both traffic models have been coded and applied to a realistic real-size evacuation scenario with promising results. One important feature that is explored is the incorporation of evacuation safety aspects in the optimization model. An index of the threat level is associated with each link that reflects the adverse effects of traveling in a given threat zone on the safety and health of evacuees during the process of evacuation. The optimization problem is then formulated to minimize the total exposure of evacuees to the threat. A hypothetical large-scale chlorine gas spill in a high populated urban area (downtown Tucson, Arizona) has been modeled for testing the evacuation models where the network has varying threat levels. In addition to the proposed decomposition method, an efficient network-flow solution algorithm is also proposed to find the optimal routing of traffic in networks with several threat zones, where the threat levels may be non-uniform across different zones. The proposed method can be categorized in the class of "negative cycle canceling" algorithms for solving minimum cost flow problems. The unique feature in the proposed algorithm is introducing a multi-source shortest path calculation which enables the efficient detection and cancellation of negative cycles. The proposed method is proven to find the optimal solution, and it is also applied to and verified for a mid-size test network scenario.
Degree ProgramGraduate College