International Construction Specialty Conference of the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (ICSC) (5th : 2015)

Optimizing environmental sustainability and public benefits of transportation network programs Limsawasd, Charinee; Orabi, Wallied


Transportation is among the highest energy-consuming economy sectors. Therefore, new national priorities and laws passed in the United States in an effort to control the environmental impacts of highway rehabilitation efforts. This created new challenges to planners and decision makers in transportation agencies to optimize, under budget constraints, rehabilitation efforts of aging networks in order to maximize net public benefits while minimizing network energy consumption. This mandates a substantial change in existing ad-hoc and need-based decision-making practices in order to add new criteria to evaluate and measure network energy consumption. Accordingly, this paper presents a new model for planning highway rehabilitation efforts that is capable of identifying near optimal program(s) in terms of maximizing net public benefits while minimizing energy consumption of transportation networks. The new model is designed to: (1) evaluating and measuring the impact of decision making in highway rehabilitation programs on network energy consumption; (2) evaluating the impact of rehabilitation decisions on the cost of travel delays due to highway construction work; (3) estimating the expected savings in road user costs due to the completed rehabilitation efforts; (4) estimating the lifecycle public costs and benefits associated with highway rehabilitation decisions; and (5) optimizing rehabilitation decisions in order to search for and identify the highway construction program(s) that simultaneously maximize public benefits and minimize energy consumption under budget constraints. An application example for a transportation network in South Florida is analyzed to demonstrate the model capabilities and examine the relationship between lifecycle net public benefits and total network energy consumption. The analysis of the application example showed that there is a trade-off between the expected net public benefits and network energy consumption. The new model should prove useful to transportation agencies in identifying rehabilitation program(s) that satisfy public expectations while minimizing energy consumption in transportation networks.

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