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Estimation of annual average daily traffic on low-volume roads : Factor approach versus neural networks Sharma, Satish C et al

By: Publication details: Transportation Research Record, 2000Description: nr 1719, s. 103-11Subject(s): Bibl.nr: VTI P8167:1719Location: Abstract: Estimation of the annual average daily traffic (AADT) for low-volume roads is investigated. Artificial neural networks are compared with the traditional factor approach for estimating AADT from short-period traffic counts. Fifty-five automatic traffic recorder (ATR) sites located on low-volume rural roads in Alberta, Canada, are used as study samples. The results of this study indicate that, when a single 48-h count is used for AADT estimation, the factor approach can yield better results than the neural networks if the ATR sites are grouped appropriately and the sample sites are correctly assigned to various ATR groups. Unfortunately, the current recommended practice offers little guidance on how to achieve the assignment accuracy that may be necessary to obtain reliable AADT estimates from a single 48-h count. The neural network approach can be particularly suitable for estimating AADT from two 48-h counts taken at different times during the counting season. In fact, the 95th percentile error values of about 25% as obtained in this study for the neural network models compare favorably with the values reported in the literature for low-volume roads using the traditional factor approach. The advantage of the neural network approach is that classification of ATR sites and sample site assignments to ATR groups are not required. The analysis of various groups of low-volume roads presented also leads to a conclusion that, when defining low-volume roads from a traffic monitoring point of view, it is not likely to matter much whether the AADT on the facility is less than 500 vehicles, less than 750 vehicles, or less than 1,000 vehicles.
Item type: Reports, conferences, monographs
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Estimation of the annual average daily traffic (AADT) for low-volume roads is investigated. Artificial neural networks are compared with the traditional factor approach for estimating AADT from short-period traffic counts. Fifty-five automatic traffic recorder (ATR) sites located on low-volume rural roads in Alberta, Canada, are used as study samples. The results of this study indicate that, when a single 48-h count is used for AADT estimation, the factor approach can yield better results than the neural networks if the ATR sites are grouped appropriately and the sample sites are correctly assigned to various ATR groups. Unfortunately, the current recommended practice offers little guidance on how to achieve the assignment accuracy that may be necessary to obtain reliable AADT estimates from a single 48-h count. The neural network approach can be particularly suitable for estimating AADT from two 48-h counts taken at different times during the counting season. In fact, the 95th percentile error values of about 25% as obtained in this study for the neural network models compare favorably with the values reported in the literature for low-volume roads using the traditional factor approach. The advantage of the neural network approach is that classification of ATR sites and sample site assignments to ATR groups are not required. The analysis of various groups of low-volume roads presented also leads to a conclusion that, when defining low-volume roads from a traffic monitoring point of view, it is not likely to matter much whether the AADT on the facility is less than 500 vehicles, less than 750 vehicles, or less than 1,000 vehicles.

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