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Research Projects

STATUS: Complete YEAR: 2020 TOPIC AREA: Public transit, land use, and urban mobility Transportation planning, policy, and finance CENTER: PSR

Making HOT lanes benefit every traveler: design, pricing, and analysis

Project Summary

Project number: PSR-20-07
Funding source: US DOT
Contract number: 69A3551747109
Funding amount: $100,000
Performance period: 08/16/20 to 12/31/21

Project description

HOT lanes are HOV lanes that permit solo-drivers to use them with a charge. Such facilities can promote carpool use while not wasting lane capacity if the lane is underutilized by carpoolers, and provide a revenue stream to the HOT lane operators. Most of the HOT lane facilities are single-lane facilities that either has too little spare capacity for solo-drivers, or plagued by moving bottlenecks created by slower drivers or the friction between fast moving HOT lanes traffic and slow moving regular lanes traffic. In this research, we propose a new design of HOT lanes that 1) comprises a minimum of two lanes, 2) is priced to maintain capacity flow, and 3) benefits both carpoolers and regular lane travelers. We will select a section of a freeway with existing carpool lanes, convert the carpool lane to HOT lanes with the new design, and compare the performance of the two systems under existing demand conditions and reasonable assumptions of drivers' value of time, carpooling pairing cost, and traffic's tendency to equilibrate over generalized travel cost.

This collaborative proposal combines the expertise of domain researchers in transportation science and engineering and leading researchers in mathematical optimization from the two institutions: University of California at Davis and University of Southern California. Their joint effort strengthens the collaboration between these two institutions with the common goal of addressing an important change of events in today's mobility systems that has significant impacts to the well-being of urban transportation.


Maged Dessouky
Dean's Professor and Chair, Daniel J. Epstein Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
3715 McClintock Ave.
Ethel Percy Andrus Gerontology Center (GER) 206ALos Angeles, CA 90089-0193
United States
[email protected]


Michael Zhang
Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
3145 Ghausi Hall
Davis, CA 95616
United States
[email protected]