To read the full version of this content please select one of the options below:

A GIS-microscopic simulation approach for optimizing road barrier placement and configuration in university campus emergency evacuation

Hubo Cai (Division of Construction Engineering and Management, School of Civil Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, USA)
Asadur Rahman (Department of Civil and Construction Engineering, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA)
Xing Su (School of Civil Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, USA, and)
Hongtao Zhang (Smart Computing and Information Science Laboratory, Shenzhen Institute of Advanced Technology, Chinese Academy of Science, Shenzhen, China)

International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment

ISSN: 1759-5908

Article publication date: 4 November 2014

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to create a framework that integrates GIS and microscopic simulation to optimize the placement of road barriers in emergency evacuation and assess the effectiveness via simulation. Human populations are at risk from many hazards including man-made and natural disasters, sudden events that are difficult to predict and prevent, but have catastrophic consequences. A critical issue in disaster management is timely evacuation that considers the dynamic traffic demand and congestions under dynamic hazard conditions. University campuses face a unique challenge in developing effective emergency evacuation plans due to their complex site configurations, high-dense buildings and dynamic spatial-temporal distribution of population.

Design/methodology/approach

The framework was implemented and tested on the main campus of the Western Michigan University to optimize the placement and configuration of road barriers to achieve an effective utilization of road network when the demand way exceeds the capacity. The resulting system was also used to test the effectiveness of the phased evacuation notification strategy, both with and without the optimal road barrier strategy.

Findings

It concluded that the newly created framework and its implementation could assist emergency evacuation planning for university campuses. It also concluded that placing road barriers at appropriate locations could reduce the evacuation time by 20 per cent or more under a variety of evacuation scenarios.

Originality/value

The originality of this research lies in three aspects of: a university campus context, the integration of GIS and microscopic simulation in emergency evacuation and the simulation based turn restriction strategy.

Keywords

Citation

Cai, H., Rahman, A., Su, X. and Zhang, H. (2014), "A GIS-microscopic simulation approach for optimizing road barrier placement and configuration in university campus emergency evacuation", International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment, Vol. 5 No. 4, pp. 362-379. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJDRBE-06-2012-0014

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited