California Department of Transportation

Smart Travel Choices – Field Operational Tests


Prakash Sah

Task Description

California cities suffer from some of the worst traffic congestion in the country, costing travels time, fuel and money, hindering the economic development and negatively impacting the environment. On-going highway improvements, traffic management through deployment of ITS technologies have significantly improved the services on the existing roads, however congestion persist due to the fact that traffic demands approach or exceed the available capacities of the highway systems in all metropolitan areas (in California and in United States). “Changing travel habits and reducing commuter and business driving are cost-saving alternatives to building ever-increasing highway and public transit capacity (– Oregon DOT)”, yet effective means to encourage and empower  travelers to change their travel behaviors for achieving demand reduction are needed.

Task Objective

The ultimate goal is to mitigate (or avoid) traffic congestion and to subsequently reduce energy use and emission, by reducing the number of single occupancy vehicles on highways.  The objective is to develop approaches to encourage and enable travelers to (1) make smart travel decisions, (2) share use vehicles and (3) choose time of commute during peak hours. A secondary goal is to obtain high quality travel behavior data (OD + mode of travel) in order to support transportation planning and real-time traffic management.

Final Report/Deliverables

Proposed Research