Zheng, P., McDonald, M. and Jeffery, D.
Identification of traffic profiling scheme from operational data
At 87th Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board.
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Historic traffic profiles are widely used in many traffic applications as baseline traffic conditions for comparison purposes. They are usually constructed from traffic data obtained from a number of previous similar days. The most widely used profiling scheme is based on natural day groups such as weekdays, generally selected based on common sense and limited observations. The research reported here has increased knowledge of profiling schemes through a large scale investigation of traffic patterns using operational traffic flow and travel time data obtained over an extensive period. A new traffic profiling scheme has been developed using a data-driven approach. Operational traffic and travel time data collected by the NTCC (National Traffic Control Centre) on the strategic roads across England over a period of two years have been used to identify the most similar day groups. A general scheme with 10 day-groups and an exponential updating algorithm has been identified. Test results have revealed that the new scheme performed better than the traditional weekday based scheme. The research established a comprehensive understanding of traffic flow and travel time patterns in historical data. It is believed that the profiling scheme and methodologies developed in this research could be useful for traffic data profiling practice
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