Alan J. Horowitz
About the research
The effectiveness of work zone operational or control strategies is conditioned on a good estimate of the traffic volume though the work zone and amount of traffic diverting to alternate routes, as well as their resulting traffic impacts. Unfortunately, the ability to reliably estimate traffic diverting from work zones has not been adequately addressed, either in the professional literature or in practice. This project conducts an empirical study of traffic diversion at freeway work zones based on the analysis of collected field data. In addition, this study provides an understanding of how drivers behave when they encounter a work zone ahead. Data from traffic detectors, Bluetooth technology and a driver survey are collected at two rural work zones near Portage, WI and Tomah, WI. The findings from this study are further used to define traffic diversion estimation model. Such a model could enable a reliable estimation of diversion traffic at a target work zone. The model can be readily implemented in travel forecasting software.