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This study reports on the effect of demand variation on the optimal location of road-pricing cordons. The optimal road-pricing cordon, in this study, aims to maximise the…
This study reports on the effect of demand variation on the optimal location of road-pricing cordons. The optimal road-pricing cordon, in this study, aims to maximise the social welfare function. This optimisation program is categorised as Bi-level optimisation programming which is a NP hard problem. The paper first describes the method developed to solve the optimal toll problem for a given set of chargeable links. The tests were carried out with a small toy network and a larger scale network. For the small network, four single user class demand characteristics were varied individually; these were the elasticity of trip generation with respect to increases in travel cost, value of travel time, volume of traffic, and traffic distribution pattern. For the larger scale network, only elasticity, value of time, and trip volume were tested. The results of the larger scale network are also analysed by including the cost per toll point. The tests with the larger scale network were modified so that the constraint of uniform charge is applied. The results showed that demand variation could influence the best location of toll points. This finding raises the question of whether the implementation of the same cordon all day in an urban traffic network is the optimal approach under the existence of demand variations by time of day, and also whether the evaluation process of the cordon location should consider the effect of different time periods together.