Advanced Decision Modeling for Real Time Variable Tolling-Development and Testing of a Data Collection Platform

This study is developing a real-time data collection platform using smart phones/tablets to obtain drivers' subjective travel time savings and realize choice of selecting a variable tolled lane. A prototype smart application has been developed to prompt drivers at decision travel points with an audio cue that asks them to estimate travel time. It also records the variable toll at the time of the prompt. Another feature of the study also obtains and records current traffic conditions such as travel time and vehicle count.

It is expected that the device will be deployed to 150 drivers in the Minneapolis/St. Paul corridor for further testing in 2013.

The goal is to improve how variable tolls are set based on real-world data.  Eventually, such tolls may be used to help manage traffic congestion. Data collection for this study is part of an emerging trend in the field that seeks to use real-time data collection, as opposed to survey-based collection procedures.