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Environmental impact analyses of transport systems

Keywords: impact analyses, sustainable transport, emission models, demand models, traffic counts, micro-simulation
Fig. 1. Pressurized tube based 24h bicycle counting (Autohr: Federico Rupi).
Fig. 2. Averaged bicycle flows for a one day priod at a particular intersection of a bicycle way (Author: Federico Rupi).
Fig. 3. CO2 reductions (averaged over 13 cities) for different bicycle infrastructure scenarios (Author: Federico Rupi).

The quantification of environmental impacts and energy consumption of present and future traffic scenarios is becoming increasingly important as guidance for decision makers and for the resource efficient allocation of investments in transport infrastructure and services. The full application of “user pays” and “polluter pays” principle is a goal set out in the European whitepaper 2011 “Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area”. Therefore, the quantification of different future transport scenarios are essential for the creation of sustainable urban mobility plans (SUMP).

The goal of this research activity is to develop methods to process “big data” (from measure-ments, survey, census data, GPS traces, Open source , etc.) in order to create refined mobility models based on microscopic models.

Particular attention is devoted to quantify the pos-itive impacts of bicycle mobility and high quality public transport such as Personal Rapid Transit (PRT). Current research is focused on calibrations of generalized cost function model for bicycle ways using geometric information from Open-streetmap and geo-referenced speed profiles from real bicycle trips; calibration of path choice models as support for bikeway planning; development of assessment software based on multi-modal micro-simulation models and the estimation of a virtual population.

Once completed this software will allow to esti-mate the environmental impacts of present and hypothetical traffic scenarios – for instance after the implementation of bicycle ways or public transport services.

There have been activities in the following pro-jects:

  • Annual bicycle flow measurements for city of Bologna; radar and tube based 24h bicycle counts and the estimation of increased bicycle usage.
  • Analysis of GPS traces collected during the Eu-ropean cycling challenge.
  • Central Europe project BICY: mobility survey, future demand estimation and impact analyses for 13 European cities.
  • Participation in the joint development of the SUMO micro simulation tool, in cooperation with the main developer at the German Aerospace Center, Institute of Transportation Systems Berlin, Germany.

Main publications

Schweizer Joerg, Bernardi Silvia, Rupi Federico (2016). Map-matching algorithm applied to bicycle global positioning system traces in Bologna. IET INTELLIGENT TRANSPORT SYSTEMS, vol. 10, p. 244-250, ISSN: 1751-956X

Joerg Schweizer, Federico Rupi (2014). Perfor-mance Evaluation of Extreme Bicycle Scenarios. PROCEDIA: SOCIAL & BEHAVIORAL SCI-ENCES, vol. 111, p. 508-517, ISSN: 1877-0428

Meggs J.N., Rupi F., Schweizer J. (2013). Can PRT overcome the conflicts between public transport and cycling?. In: Living and walking in cities. Cultures and techniques for accessibility. p. 215-220, Forlì:EGAF Edizioni SRL, ISBN: 9788884825018, Brescia, 14-15 giugno 2012.

Schweizer J., Meggs J.N., Dehkordi N.R., Rupi F., Pashkevich A. (2012). Unified, Low-Cost Analysis Framework for the Cycling Situation in Cities. In: International Journal of Civil and Envi-ronmental Engineering . p. 356-363.

Meggs J.N., Schweizer J. (2012). The future of bicycling given a world in degrowth: perspectives and lessons based on the Central European project, BICY. In: 3rd International Conference on Degrowth, Ecological Sustainability and Social Equity . p. 1-22.

Dehkordi N.R., Meggs J.N., A. Pashkevich A., Rupi F., Schweizer J. (2012). Automobile, public transport and bike usage in West and Eastern Eu-rope: a comparative survey. In: 15th International Conference on Transport science 2012, ICTS, Portoroz, Slovenia, ISBN: 9789616044943.

Rupi F., Bernardi S., Bertoni S. (2013). Analisi delle distribuzioni delle velocità sull piste ciclabili e sulle carreggiate stradali adiacenti. In Living and walking in cities. Safety and vulnerable road users. XX Conferenza Internazionale Living and Walking in Cities, Brescia 13-14 Giugno 2013.

Research projects

EU 2CE108P2 Project: BICY – Cities & Regions of Bicycles; a project of Central Europe and co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund, ERD