Guide to Calculating Mobility Management Benefits Victoria Transport Policy Institute
Strategies that improve alternative modes, particularly grade-separated transit or HOV routes, are also particularly effective at reducing congestion (Litman, 2005). Commute, school and tourist transport management programs also tend to be particularly effective for reducing congestion. Freight transport management can reduce congestion on corridors with heavy truck traffic. Smart growth that concentrates activities tends to increase the intensity of congestion but reduce its overall costs by reducing the distance between destinations and improving alternative modes.
Mobility Management Congestion Reduction Effectiveness
Transit & rideshare improvements
Walking & cycling improvements
HOV priority Flextime Congestion pricing
Marketing programs Distance-based fees Carsharing
Telework Parking management & pricing
Fuel tax increases Taxi service improvements
Commute trip reduction programs & incentives
Freight transport management
School and campus transport management
Tourist transport management
Transit oriented development
Least Effective Smart growth
Carfree planning Traffic calming
Land use management strategies that concentrate activities tend to increase congestion intensity (as measured by roadway level-of-service) but
reduce per capita congestion costs by reducing travel distances and improving travel options such as walking and high quality public transit.
This table identifies how various mobility management strategies affect congestion.
Conventional transport planning gives congestion costs considerable consideration, although it often overlooks the downstream congestion induced by generous, cheap parking, highway expansions and sprawled land use. Standard methods exist for monetizing congestion costs and therefore the congestion reduction benefits of reducing vehicle travel (TTI, 2005; Litman, 2009). Typical estimates range between 5¢ and 20¢ per urban-peak vehicle-mile, with higher values under certain conditions. However, commonly-used congestion cost indicators have the following problems:
They measure motorist delay relative to freeflow road conditions, which represents the higher end of reasonable monetized values. Many economists consider it more accurate to measure delay relative to a moderate level of congestion or based on consumers’ willingness to pay for increased mobility, which results in lower values.
They only measure motorists’ delay, and therefore do not recognize the congestion reduction benefit to people who shift to alternative modes such as walking, cycling, grade-separated transit or telework, or from smart growth land use policies that reduce travel distances. They therefore undervalue many mobility management strategies.
They ignore congestion impacts motor vehicle traffic imposes on non-motorized travel, and so undervalue strategies that reduce conflicts between motorized and nonmotorized modes.