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Introduction 5 grams for pricing projects, identifying appropriate performance measures, and implementing public outreach efforts for these projects. Performance monitoring for congestion pricing projects accomplishes three important and interrelated purposes: 1. To ensure that they are functioning as efficiently as possible and make adjustments to oper- ational policies if they are not; 2. To quantify and validate the different benefits these facilities deliver; and 3. To document the successful application of congestion pricing in support of their expanded use. These guidelines are designed to help agencies understand (1) how and when to put evalu- ation and performance measurement programs in place and (2) how to identify and develop appropriate performance measures, collect the necessary data, evaluate performance and adjust management procedures to ensure performance standards are being met, and commu- nicate the results. While these guidelines attempt to identify as broad a range of goals and performance mea- sures as possible, it is also important to recognize that the resources available to transportation agencies to support performance evaluation are often constrained. The guidelines offer recom- mendations on which measures are particularly effective in the management of priced facilities and conveying the effects of congestion pricing projects to the public when funds for more exten- sive monitoring programs are not available. 1.2 Types of Congestion Pricing Congestion pricing projects in operation in the United States and abroad can be categorized into three basic types: 1. Variably priced managed lanes 2. Toll facilities with variable pricing 3. Cordon and area pricing These guidelines provide tailored recommendations on performance monitoring for each of these pricing forms. The following descriptions provide further information on these three types of congestion pricing.1 1.2.1 Variably Priced Managed Lanes Variably priced managed lanes are designated highway lanes operated to provide improved travel conditions to eligible users. The most common form of managed lanes is the HOV lane, which uses vehicle occupancy to meter traffic. In certain cases, tolls may be used as an additional or standalone criterion to meter the flow of traffic on the managed lanes. Following from this, highway facilities with variably priced managed lanes feature "partial facility" pricing, whereby one or more lanes in one or both directions on a roadway facility are priced and operate in con- junction with adjacent, un-priced, general-purpose lane capacity. These facilities take two forms: 1. HOT (or express) lanes, which combine variable pricing for lower occupancy vehicles with free travel for higher occupancy vehicles; and 2. Express Toll Lanes (ETLs), which charge the same variable toll for all vehicles or a variable toll for lower occupancy vehicles with a discounted toll for higher occupancy vehicles. 1 Definitions and descriptions have been adapted from the Federal Highway Administration's Office of Innovative Program Delivery--Road Pricing Revenue website (http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ipd/revenue/road_pricing/index.htm).
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6 Evaluation and Performance Measurement of Congestion Pricing Projects As with toll facilities with variable pricing, variable toll rates can be fixed or dynamic. The use of variably priced managed lanes is exclusive to the United States. Nearly all-- 11 facilities operational as of late 2010--are HOT lanes, converted from HOV lanes. Exceptions include the 91 Express Lanes in Orange County, California, which were constructed in the cor- ridor's median as a privately developed expansion project and operate as ETL in the eastbound direction weekdays between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. Also, portions of the UPA-grant funded I-35W HOT lanes in Minneapolis, which combine HOV lane conversion with corridor widening and shoulder lane conversion. Common goals of these facilities include providing a reliable alternative to frequently congested general purpose lane capacity along a corridor. The fixed variable or dynamically variable pricing schedule is designed to maintain a certain level of service, flow rate, or travel time, removing the uncertainty and variability in travel on the un-priced lanes. Often, other goals for these facilities are a desire not to degrade certain levels of safety or create inequities in availability to users, such as those with lower incomes who may be less able to pay the toll charged. Finally, revenue to help pay for maintenance and operations or maintain a certain debt coverage ratio is often a consider- ation, but is typically secondary to maximizing system efficiency and reliability. 1.2.2 Toll Facilities with Variable Pricing Toll facilities with variable pricing involve "full facility" pricing, where all lanes of a facility are tolled at variably priced rates in response to time of day and travel demand. Toll facilities with variable pricing can involve new or existing highways, bridges, and tunnel crossings. Toll facili- ties may involve the introduction of a variably priced toll structure on legacy facilities that pre- viously featured fixed toll rates, or the use of variably priced toll rates on new facilities. Toll rates on these facilities vary by time of day or congestion level such that peak-period travel is more expensive than off-peak travel, encouraging some motorists to move their trips to off-peak periods or use other travel modes, such as transit. In this manner, the duration of peak-period con- gestion is reduced or eliminated, increasing the reliability of a user's trip and allowing for more effi- cient use of system capacity from a time-of-day and physical (lane-mile) standpoint. Variable toll rates can be fixed on a particular schedule or vary dynamically based on real-time traffic condi- tions. Electronic toll collection (ETC) is critical to these systems' efficient operation. In the United States, toll facilities with variable pricing include the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey's bridge and tunnel crossings between New Jersey and New York City; the New Jersey Turnpike; the Midpoint and Cape Coral Bridges in Lee County, FL; and the San Joaquin and Foothill/Eastern toll roads in Orange County, CA, operated by transportation corridor agen- cies. Outside the United States, the 407 ETR in Toronto, Canada, uses variable pricing. Other facilities include Autoroute A1 from Lille to Paris that charges a peak toll on Sunday afternoons, the Harbour Bridge in Sydney, and toll roads in Japan on a pilot basis. Because these facilities operate as "traditional" toll facilities--i.e., tolls are collected to support their operation, main- tenance, and possible expansion--revenue generation often remains the primary goal. On a sec- ondary basis, reducing congestion, increasing reliability, and encouraging off-peak or alternate mode (e.g., public transit) travel are also goals of these facilities. 1.2.3 Cordon and Area Pricing Cordon and area pricing is a strategy designed to mitigate traffic congestion in dense urban environments--generally city centers and the corridors providing access to them--by charging vehicles during peak periods, either each time they pass a set boundary (cordon) or once during a set period (e.g., 24 hours) as they enter (or travel within) a specified zone (area). In addition, a wide range of other charging options exist for both these schemes, including varying charges