About the research
The objective of this project was to promote and facilitate analysis and evaluation of the impacts of road construction activities in Smart Work Zone Deployment Initiative (SWZDI) states. This objective was accomplished through the creation of a university-based, on-demand service located at the Center for Transportation Research and Education (CTRE). This service was modeled after a successful, safety-related service currently located at CTRE, the Iowa Traffic Safety Data Service (ITSDS). ITSDS performs on-demand safety analyses for national, state, local, and private entities, and annually addresses more than 100 requests from over 40 different agencies.
The emphasis of the work zone forecasting service is to assist SWZDI states to determine the impacts of road construction activities on traffic patterns and congestion. The service may provide assistance in technical matters regarding application of software commonly used to investigate the impacts of construction activities as well as develop models to estimate queu length, delay, travel behavior, and cost associated with specific road construction activities and traffic control. With such a service at SWZDI states’ disposal, they may be better equipped to make more informed decisions regarding implementation of construction staging and traffic control plans that minimize impacts to traffic and balance the cost of construction with the cost of delays to the traveling public.