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18 I N N O VAT I O N S I N T R AV E L D E M A N D M O D E L I N G , V O L U M E 1 each scenario. The trip distribution and mode choice the tour level, as opposed to the trip level, for each indi- stages are more closely intertwined with the new vidual household and person, rather than zonal and mar- microsimulation models. In theory, the new models offer ket segment aggregates. The network and assignment additional possibilities for quantifying user benefits of procedures use disaggregate tours converted to trips and transit projects compared with the traditional models. aggregated to the zonal level. The model uses a typical There are still numerous methodological and technical zonal network, which includes 1,877 zones and 26,000 questions to be addressed, however. links, with transit and path building and assignment rou- The MORPC model was used in the North Corri- tines in TP+. dor study. Key subsets of the model include the primary The New Starts program is the primary federal fund- tour destination model, the time-of-day model, the entire ing source for new fixed-guideway capital investments. tour mode and best transit submode, the stop frequency Approximately $1.5 billion is available for fixed- model, the stop location model, the trip mode model, guideway transit investments on an annual basis. All proj- and the traffic and transit assignment. ects undergo an evaluation and are rated by FTA. A key In the North Corridor study, the MORPC model criterion in the evaluation is the cost per unit of benefit. was first run for the base scenario. All tours were fixed The cost measure is the annualized incremental capital with their primary destinations and the build scenario cost plus the annual operating cost. The benefit measure is was run for several iterations, including only mode, stop the hours of transportation system user benefits. Since frequency, and stop location choices, as well as assign- 2002, the characteristics of the travel forecasting model ments. The tour-level mode choice statistics are used for used in the analysis have become a concern to FTA. The the user benefit calculation. The SFCTA model has also travel demand model used in a New Starts analysis must been used on an FTA New Starts program analysis. This undergo rigorous scrutiny in terms of model structure, assessment was part of the New Central Subway Project parameter values, and forecasting results. in downtown San Francisco. With the SFCTA model, The North Corridor included in the New Starts proj- user benefits are estimated from both the entire tour ect is 13 miles in length. The NCTP is currently in the Draft mode choice and the trip mode choice. Environmental Impact Statement stage, with potential sub- mission as a New Starts project in the next few years. The corridor includes three major employment centers inter- APPLICATION OF THE MID-OHIO REGIONAL spersed with large residential areas. The three employment PLANNING COMMISSION MICROSIMULATION centers are the Crosswoods/Polaris area, Ohio State Uni- MODEL: REVIEW OF THE NEW STARTS versity, and the Columbus CBD. A total of 13 districts were PROGRAM used in the analysis. The simulated year 2000 work trip distribution David Schmitt was compared with the 2000 Census Transportation Planning Package (CTPP) to assess the work-tour com- Dave Schmitt described the use of the MORPC microsim- ponent of the distribution model. Overall, the modeled ulation model to generate forecasts for the North Corri- work trip distribution appeared to be reasonable and dor Transit Project (NCTP). He summarized the model almost all the markets were within 20% of the CTPP elements, the requirements of the FTA New Starts pro- total. The modeled trip distribution for all journeys and gram, the NCTP, and the application of the model with tours compared with the CTPP was not as good as the the NCTP. Volume 2 includes a paper on this topic.6 The work-tour distribution, but was still reasonable. A few following points were covered in his presentation. production districts overestimated trips, while the attrac- tion districts appeared closer to the CTPP. An independent review of the MORPC microsimu- User benefit results are considered reasonable if lation model was conducted at a New Starts level of they reflect the benefits of the proposed build project. scrutiny. The key review elements included trip distribu- For example, the corridor area should accrue the major- tion, transit network (including access coding, automo- ity of user benefits, while areas outside of the corridor bile and transit speeds, path building, and mode choice), should receive minimal benefits. Major employment transit assignment, and user benefit results. areas that benefit the most from the project should The MORCP model is a disaggregate tour-based receive larger user benefits. The district-to-district sum- model applied with the microsimulation of each individ- mary tables and corresponding maps illustrating the ual household, person, or tour. Travel is accounted for at travel analysis zones that receive the most benefits and disbenefits from the project were reviewed. This 6 See Schmitt, D. Application of the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning approach is useful in evaluating whether the user benefit Commission Microsimulation Model: Review of the New Starts results are directly related to the proposed project. Program. Volume 2, pp. 3745.