Benefit

In Minneapolis-St.Paul, an evaluation of the effectiveness of ramp meters on four test corridors showed that the number of crashes recorded for the interim period with reduced ramp metering capacity was 15 percent higher that the average number of crashes measured for the previous fully metered periods.


10 May 2002
Minneapolis-St. Paul,Minnesota,United States


Summary Information

The Minnesota Department of Transportation (Mn/DOT) evaluated the effectiveness of ramp meters on four test corridors in Minneapolis-St.Paul.

The evaluation was conducted in two phases:
  • Phase I was designed to measure system performance, gauge public satisfaction with initial ramp metering strategies (September/October of 2000), and determine the impacts of discontinued operations during a ramp meter shut down test (October/November 2000).
  • Phase II of the project was designed to optimize system performance, evaluate public opinion to alternative ramp meter strategies, and encourage long term planning (Fall 2001).

During Phase I, a variety of data were collected using multiple collection techniques including probe vehicles (operated during peak periods), traffic detectors (for traffic volume counts), traveler surveys, and crash statistics. At the conclusion of the Phase I ramp meter shut down experiment in December of 2000, the following Phase II interim ramp metering strategies were implemented:
  • A number of meters were left turned off;
  • Ramp meter operations were reduced to four hours each day; and
  • Faster metering rates were used.

The Phase I and Phase II evaluations were conducted in a similar fashion and covered the same corridor study areas. The Phase II evaluation used field observations, focus groups, and telephone surveys to measure system performance and gauge public reaction to modified operations.

Despite the resumption of ramp metering at select locations in each corridor, traffic operations and safety performance remained degraded and were unable to be restored to pre-shut down (full metering) levels by the end of the interim period.

FINDINGS

The number of crashes recorded for the first seven months of 2001 (interim period with reduced ramp metering capacity) was 15 percent higher that the average number of crashes measured for the first seven months of 1998, 1999, and 2000 (fully metered period).

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Source

Mn/DOT Ramp Meter Evaluation: Phase II Evaluation Report

Published By: Minnesota DOT

Prepared for the Minnesota DOT by Cambridge Systematics

Source Date: 10 May 2002

URL: http://www.dot.state.mn.us/rampmeter/pdf/evalreport.pdf

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Goal Areas

Safety

Typical Deployment Locations

Metropolitan Areas

Keywords

ramp meters

Benefit ID: 2007-00436