Recent Activity at the Center for Urban Transportation Studies

The second annual Farewell to County Stadium tailgate party was held at the end of last semester and it was attended by current students, faculty and alumni. Students in our program have been in high demand during the past year with many going to work for local consulting firms and/or government agencies in the Milwaukee area.

Collaboration with Other Universities

The Center has joined several other universities to increase the level of collaboration between UWM and other universities. The first of these is the Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Alliance with Marquette University, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the Medical College of Wisconsin. The alliance will be used to share resources among the universities to focus on ITS research and training.

The second collaboration effort is participation in the Midwest University Regional University Transportation Center sponsored by the U. S. Department of Transportation. This center involves a consortium of universities including UWM, UW-Madison, Northwestern University, University of Cincinnati, Richard Daley Junior College in Chicago, and Lac Courte Orielles College. The center, led by UW-Madison, will focus on a theme of access management for transportation and engage in both research and training activities. Work at UWM is expected to focus on intermodal issues and performance measurement.

Students Host ITE meeting

The student chapter of the Institute of Transportation Engineers hosted the monthly meeting of the Wisconsin Chapter of ITE in March. Student chapter members led by Matt Haefs made all the arrangements for the meeting at the UWM Union including food, reservations and program. The program was presented by Profs Peng and Horowitz who talked about the use of vehicle location information for transportation planning and operations. Prof Peng discussed the Automatic Vehicle Location project and Prof Horowitz discussed work that was based on a thesis by Oliver Jan that examined traveler path choices using AVL data.

Transportation Research Board Meeting

For the third year in a row, UWM students were able to attend the Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. in January. They were Matt Haefs. Claude Williams Jr., Eyad Omari. Smith Vijayan, Cordella Jones, Todd Demsky, Dan Guido, and Tammy Loose. The TRB meeting is the largest meeting of transportation professionals in the world, with an attendance of more than 8,000 people. UWM students who attended the meeting were able to attend technical sessions and committee meetings, as well as meet informally with students from other universities. The students travel was paid for with funds donated by college alumni as well as from student government funds. Professors Horowitz, Beimborn, and Peng had papers presented at the conference.

Recent Projects

Recent work in the Center has focused on intelligent transportation systems. Professor Horowitz is working with Professor Drakapolis of Marquette University on a project to evaluate the effectiveness of ramp meters along Highway 45. Before and after data will be analyzed to determine how ramp meters affect freeway operations.

Professor Beimborn and Professor Zhong-Ren Peng of Urban Planning have completed a study for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation on methods for intelligent transportation systems (ITS) benefits evaluation. A break-even analysis technique was used to find the threshold values of performance that are needed for an ITS system to be successful. This work will be used by WDOT for their systems planning efforts. Results of this work and earlier work on automatic vehicle location systems were presented at meetings in Singapore and Chicago as well as at the Transportation Research Board Meeting.

Smitha Vijayan, working with Professors Beimborn, Peng and Horowitz, completed a study of traveler information needs of airport users. This work will be used as an input to the design of information kiosks at the airport.

A new project at the Center involves a study of implementation issues for automatic vehicle location (AVL) systems for smaller transit agencies. This work is a follow-up of our earlier AVL work. Before and after studies will be conducted as well as some fundamental work on value of time and level of service assessment for transit users. Working on the project is David Soeldner, a Ph.D. student, along with Professors Beimborn and Peng.

Previous work at CUTS dealing with statewide land use transportation issues, freight forecasting and transit performance evaluation has generated significant interest through training programs and web page activities. Prof Horowitz presented several training programs for the Federal Highway Administration dealing with statewide travel forecasting and freight forecasting. Sessions were hosted by the North Carolina DOT, Mississippi DOT, George DOT, among others. CUTS also presented a session of the transit performance evaluation course in Tampa, Florida.

Finally students who took CE 940 in the spring were able to develop web based information on land use and transportation. This included the following papers:

A Land Use - Transportation Primer Smitha Vijayan (1415 K)

Environmental Issues in Local Land Use DevelopmentWilliam Schlise (381 K)

Guidelines for Transportation Facilities in local land use Decisions Christine Rawson (558 K)

Context Sensitive Highway Design Malindi Neluheni (490 K)