A Preliminary Examination of Data Envelopment Analysis for Prioritizing Improvements of a Set of Independent Four Way Signalized Intersections in a Region

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Virginia Tech

Evaluation of critical transportation infrastructure and their operation is vital for continuous evolution to meet the growing needs of the society with time. The current practice of evaluating signalized intersections has two steps. The first is to determine the level of service at which the intersection is performing. Level of Service (LOS) is based on the average delay per vehicle that gets past the particular intersection under consideration. The second step is to do a capacity analysis. This considers the number of lanes and other infrastructure related factors and also includes the influence of the control strategies.

The above-described procedure evaluates any one intersection at a time. It is necessary to compare and rank a given set of intersections for planning purposes such as choosing the sites for improvements.

The research work presented in this thesis demonstrates how Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) can be used as a tool to achieve the purpose of comparing and ranking a given set of comparable intersections. This study elaborates on various ways of representing different characteristics of an intersection. The demonstration has been restricted to four way signalized intersections.

The intersections that were used for demonstration as part of this research were created in a controlled random fashion by simulation.

Data Envelopment Analysis, Capacity Analysis Alternatives, Intersections and Capacity, Level of Service, Efficiency Based Prioritization, Relative Efficiency