• 31 Aug, 2015
  • Reports, Urban Land Use, Transportation

Project Description

While traffic congestion is a regular dinner-table conversation, media topic, and features centrally into discussions of transportation policy formation, newer data sources are only beginning to be integrated into policymaking circles as means to explore, track, and shape transportation system performance. This report represents one element of a larger study on using “Big Data” – in this case from Inrix, Inc. – to study road transportation system performance in the City of Toronto, focusing on the metric of travel speed. This study integrates data and model results from several sources to identify the slowest and fastest single days in 2014(January 1 through December 31)and portions of 2011(August 8 through December 31)and 2013 (July 1 through December 31). Only the freeways are analyzed for 2011 and 2013 while the freeway and arterial networks are each assessed independently for 2014 to focus the analysis on those system components which are best tracked by the available data for each year. Results suggest four major findings when focusing on mean daily travel speeds of “typical days.” First, weekend speeds are higher than weekday speeds. Freeway speeds are on average 7 to 10 kilometers per hour faster during weekdays than during the week. Second, most of the very slowest days of the year can be explicitly matched to snow and rain events. Third, those weekdays with atypically fast mean travel speeds are on holidays. Finally, daily travel conditions are much less stable during winter months than during summer months. This appears to be due to the joint impacts of the previous two factors: holidays (on which speeds are higher) and extreme weather events (during which speeds are lower). In sum, although severe incidents which trigger broader gridlock may severely impact the experiences of many downstream system users, the most pronounced patterns in daily freeway travel conditions stem from factors which are largely outside of the purview of policymaking: holidays, weekends, and weather.

The overall study was conducted in three parts: Congested Days: The first phase identified that the single most congested days occurred on days during which there was snow or rain. While this is in many ways expected, these results illustrate the role of weather in travel conditions and demonstrate the utility of these approaches when analyzing Big Data for performance monitoring.

City Congestion Trends: The second phase estimated changes in traffic congestion over the three year period from 2011 to 2014 by looking at annual, monthly, daily and hourly variations in performance metrics, including speed, delay, and unreliability. The study found that congestion did materially grow from 2011 to 2014, but the growth was uneven and congestion was in fact lower in 2013.

Corridor Report Cards: The final phase included a set of corridor report cards for 36 corridors across the City. Corridor report cards provided comparable snapshots of changes in performance between 2011 and 2014, hourly speed profiles for typical days of the week, and measures of unreliability. Results identified uneven changes in congestion over time among City roadways and expressways.


Reports:
Congested Days in Toronto
Congestion Trends in the City of Toronto (2011-2014)


  • 31 May, 2015
  • Environmental, Transportation

Project Description

This research is being carried out in conjunction with Colliers International and the Franhoefer Institute to look at analytical approaches that will assist in the optimization of a transportation plan of the yet to be developed Burlington Innovation District (BID) in Burlington, ON. The objectives of the research include: identifying the firms that are suitable for the BID and design and develop a traffic computer simulation model to examine the traffic and environmental impacts of the BID under different scenarios.


  • 31 May, 2015
  • Urban Land Use, Transportation, Reports

Project Description

There has been a lot of interest in recent years in "livable communities" which tend to be less auto- oriented than their low density, car dependent suburban counterparts. The "complete streets" concept has become very much associated with livable communities from the point of view of accessibility and equally accommodating the walking, cycling and transit modes as well as automobiles. The purpose of the proposed research is to assess the performance of complete street implementations in other jurisdictions, critically review what has been written on complete street concepts, and assess the applicability of the complete street concept in Hamilton with a view to how this approach might improve the vitality of certain key neighborhoods.

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  • 30 Apr, 2014
  • Environmental, Transportation, Reports

Project Description

This research is being carried out for Environment Canada and seeks to provide emissions estimates associated with all metropolitan road links in the CMAs covered. An Integrated Urban Modelling Framework is used where trips originating from and arriving in each small census area are estimated for each hour of the day. These trips are assigned to the road network using an advanced assignment algorithm and an appropriate environmental module is employed to estimate emissions associated with the traffic levels on each road link. Something similar is done for light, medium and heavy commercial vehicles and public transit vehicles. Variations by day and by month are taken into account to provide a complete picture for a full year.

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  • 28 Feb, 2014
  • Logistics, Transportation, Reports

Project Description

This work is being carried out in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation as a follow up to a study that examined some of the more internationally-oriented freight generators in the Province. The purpose here is use available data sources to accurately screen out a large number of second-tier freight generators scattered throughout regions of the province and to perform a round of survey work to gather further details about each generator.

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  • 31 Mar, 2012
  • Urban Land Use, Transportation, Reports

Project Description

This study examines thirty cities in North America that have already developed light rail systems and with varying levels of success. The main objective of the work is to determine the main underlying factors which have contributed to the outcomes experienced in terms of ridership and the extent of transit oriented development. The implications for a future Hamilton LRT are discussed.

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  • Partner:

    City of Hamilton


  • 29 Feb, 2012
  • Transportation, Reports

Project Description

In recent years, Hamilton, Ontario has been making modifications to its truck routes and has been considering the implications of some proposed reductions in routes. Partially, the changes result from the opening of the Red Hill Valley Parkway and partially they result from a desire to reduce the impacts of trucks on certain neighbourhoods. This brief study simulates the impacts of these changes on the movements of trucks through the city.

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  • Partner:

    City of Hamilton


  • 30 Sep, 2011
  • Urban Land Use, Transportation, Reports

Project Description

This research was carried out for the Ontario Ministry of Transportation. The purpose of the research was to explore the concept of a freight village and provide some high level insights on the applicability of the concept in the province of Ontario. A freight village is an advanced form of logistics centre where a cluster of goods movement oriented and logistics facilities are co-located and co-ordinated to achieve synergies. Key attributes include an intermodal terminal, warehousing, manufacturing, wholesaling, logistics services and access to shared facilities, equipment and services. Centralized management and ownership and partnership between the public and private sectors are also central elements. In its pure form, a freight village can serve as an incubator for smaller logistics and related firms.

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  • Partner:

    Ontario Ministry of Transportation


  • 31 Jul, 2011
  • Environmental, Transportation

Project Description

In partnership with the Rapid Transit group of the City of Hamilton, MITL created this ten minute presentation that examines Light Rail Transit in the city with an emphasis on the proposed B-Line. The presentation focuses on: how LRT in Hamilton will look, why it is important, how it can aid urban development in key areas of the city and what can be learned from other cities that have developed LRT.

  • Partner:

    City of Hamilton


  • 31 Jan, 2011
  • Logistics, Transportation, Reports

Project Description

Green Technology and Trucking: An Investigation of Factors Influencing Fuel Consumption Using GPS Data

This study explores factors such as acceleration and speed which impact fuel consumption for short-haul trucking – that is, the shipment of goods within 200 and 300 kilometers of a driver’s home terminal. The data used in this study were provided by Transcare Logistics Corporation, a member of the Carego Group of Companies. The data consisted of GPS records for all trips undertaken by two trucks operating for the corporation, freight information, and fuel information.

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  • Partner:

    Transcare Logistics Corporation

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