Field Implementation, Testing, and Refinement of Density Based Coordinated Ramp Control Strategy

Principal Investigator

John Hourdos, Director, MN Traffic Observatory, Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering


  • Panos Michalopoulos, Professor, Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering

Project Summary

A recently completed project titled "Development of the Next Generation Stratified Ramp Metering Algorithm Based on Freeway Density" and funded by the ITS Institute of University of Minnesota, designed and tested through simulation a novel ramp metering algorithm. This work was guided by MnDOT's Regional Traffic Management Center (RTMC) engineers, who served as a technical advisory panel for the project. The main goals of the new ramp metering algorithm are to delay the breakdown occurrence and to accelerate system recovery when ramp metering is unable to retain uncongested conditions in the mainline. Given the good results from the simulation tests, the RTMC requested that the algorithm be evaluated in the field under real conditions. This research will describe the effort required to schedule the algorithm field deployment, but more importantly, the enhanced observation and data collection before and during the test. With the use of MTO portable data collection stations as well as RTMC cameras and detectors, a high-resolution data set will be collected in the weeks before the new algorithm implementation as well as during implementation. The initial data will allow for on-the-spot fine tuning of the algorithm, while a comprehensive analysis of the performance of the algorithm will allow for more comprehensive improvements as well as support system-wide deployment, assuming the test validates the reported performance.


  • Minnesota Department of Transportation

Project Details

  • Start date: 05/2012
  • Project Status: Completed
  • Research Area: Transportation Safety and Traffic Flow
  • Topics: Research implementation, Safety

Reports or Products: