Analyze Congestion Problems and Needs
This step of the CMP is crucial in understanding the types and levels of congestion that are currently present in the CMP Network or forecasted in the future. ARC uses DASH, visualization tool for Federal and agency specific performance measures, to showcase congestion-related performance measures and other required metrics for federal reporting.
Types of Congestion
Causes of congestion can be grouped into two different categories: recurring and nonrecurring. Recurring congestion reflects the normal or routine commuting patterns that typically occur during the morning and afternoon rush hours. This type of congestion is often predictable because the travel routes follow a specific pattern in terms of time of day and route selection. On the other hand, nonrecurring conditions are often caused by crashes, construction, and bad weather that do not recur at the same location on a regular basis. This type of congestion is more difficult to measure and predict, especially at a regional level.
To this end, ARC focuses on analyzing recurring congestion. ARC defines congestion as occurring when observed demand or volume reaches or exceeds what a roadway or transit facility can handle. The following three variables are used to quantify congestion.
- Intensity: assesses how much delay is experienced by the average commuter.
- Duration: measures how many hours during the day a facility experiences congestion.
- Extent: identifies the number of people impacted by congestion.