California Department of Transportation

Modeling Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)

We have compiled the list below to help with questions our customers ask us frequently. This is not a comprehensive list. We will be updating it periodically.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some uses of Microsimulation at Caltrans?
A Caltrans survey has found that approximately 37% of microsimulation at Caltrans is done for operational improvement studies, 23% for congestion relief studies, 15% for planning studies, and the remainder is split between 13% new facilities studies, and 12% other studies.
Microsimulation Purposes at Caltrans

What are some benefits of using Microsimulation over Travel Demand Forecasting?
Four-step travel demand models have shortcomings. They cannot evaluate operational improvements, do not consider detailed driver behavior, and they are unable to model non-recurrent congestion. Micro-simulation addresses these shortcomings by realisticallu representing queues and traffic congestion, focusing on bottlenecks, having the ability to analyze project sequencing, integrating planning and operations, and quantifying benefits due to operational strategies. One of the key benefits is that Micro-simulation-based presentations and visuals are more effective in discussions with stakeholders.

Updated September 17, 2012