Traffic Engineering: Characteristics and Operations

Traffic Engineering: Characteristics and Operations
Traffic stream characteristics, traffic flow theory, traffic control devices, capacity and level of service, warrants, signal timing and optimization, signal coordination.
 Hours3.0 Credit, 3.0 Lecture, 0.0 Lab
 PrerequisitesCE EN 361; or equivalent.
 ProgramsContaining CE EN 562
Course Outcomes

Introduction to Traffic Control Devices

1 (o) An understanding of types of traffic control devices and their meanings and the importance of communication between traffic engineer and driver.

Traffic Stream Characteristics

2 (o) An understanding three fundamental traffic flow characteristics (speed, density and flow rate) and the relationships among them.

Statistical Applications in Traffic Engineering

3 (b) An ability to conduct descriptive statistics on traffic flow characteristics data and to conduct a means test on two samples or conduct a chi-square test to evaluate a hypothesis on an underlying distribution.

Traffic Date Collection and Reduction

4 (o) An ability to measure in the field, or at a remote station, and reduce raw traffic flow characteristics data for subsequent statistical analyses or modeling.

Volume Studies and Characteristics

5 (b) An ability to conduct different types of volume studies and analyze their characteristics such as peaking and seasonal changes and an ability to estimate demand for and capacity of the facility under study.

Speed, Travel Time, and Delay Studies

6 (b) An understanding of the difference between space mean speed and time mean speed and ability to conduct speed, travel time, and signalized intersection delay studies study.

Highway Traffic Safety Studies and Analysis

7 (o) An understanding of the importance of safety on highways and of the way highway crash data are collected and stored for statistical analyses and an ability to analyze crash data to identify statistically “hot spots” that require further evaluations and to conduct statistical analyses to evaluate the effectiveness of crash countermeasures on reduction of crashes.

Fundamental Concepts for Uninterrupted Flow

8 (c) An understanding of basic concepts of capacity and level of service used for analyzing the performance of uninterrupted flow highway facilities.

Basic Freeway Segments and Multilane Highways

9 (c) An ability to conduct capacity and level of service analysis for basic freeway and multilane highways, both manually and using the Highway Capacity Software and to evaluate the performance of such segments and determine possible improvements required for maintaining or improving the conditions of such segments.

Weaving, Merging, and Diverging Facilities

10 (c) An understanding of the concepts of capacity and level of service for complex ramp area traffic flow and an ability to conduct capacity and level of service analysis for such facilities both manually and using the Highway Capacity Software.

Signing and Marking for Highways

11 (o) An understanding of the functions of signing and marking and their use on freeways and rural highways.

Hierarchy of Intersection Control

12 (c) An understanding of the hierarchy of intersection control (Basic rules of the road, Yield and stop control, and Signals) and an ability to perform a signal warrant analysis using the method found in the MUTCD.

Basic Principles of Intersection Sginalization

13 (c) An understanding of basic principles of intersection signalization including: Discharge headways, saturation flow rates, and lost times; Allocation of time and the critical-lane concept; The concept of left-turn equivalency; and Delay as a measure of service quality, and an ability to determine these values given data of prevailing conditions.

Fundamental of Signal Timing and Design: Fixed-Time Signals

14 (c) An understanding of the key steps involved in signal design and timing including: Development of a safe and effective phase plan and sequence; Determination of vehicular signal needs; and Determination of pedestrian signal needs, and an ability to going through these steps to design and timing of pretimed signals.

Fundamentals of Signal Timing: Actuated Signals

15 (c) An understanding of the fundamental concept of actuated signals and the mechanism of changing green time allocation to all approaches depending on approach traffic demand and an ability to design phase sequences and timing signal indications manually and using signal timing software programs.

Analysis of Sginalized Intersections

16 (c) An understanding of the concept of analyzing capacity and level of service using the models presented in the Highway Capacity Manual 2010 and an ability to carry out the computations presented in the HCM manually and using the Highway Capacity Software 2010.

Signal Coordination for Arterials and Networks: Unsaturated

17 (h) An understanding of the concept of coordinating multiple signals on arterials and in a network by manipulating offsets of signals and an ability to determine optimal offsets, optimal phase sequence, and optimal green time allocation and an ability to coordinate multiple signals on arterials manually (simples systems) and using a signal optimization software program.


18 (g) An ability to express technical ideas in a written format and an ability to compose professional documents in a clear, concise, and effective manner