Portland Metro has recently implemented a suite of bicycle modeling tools as an integrated module within its regional transportation model. Built upon initial research conducted at Portland State University, these tools make use of a dedicated bicycle network containing all streets and multi-use paths in the bi-state, four-county model area. Origin-destination paths derived from the maximization of route attractiveness measures are identified and corresponding utilities for the bicycle mode are calculated and passed into the regional travel demand model. The resulting daily bicycle demand is then assigned to the bicycle network using a stochastic loading procedure.
In the process of developing the bicycle modeling tools, a number of tests were conducted to ensure an appropriate level of sensitivity. One such test consisted of an actual case study, one of the first of its kind to be conducted with a robust, dedicated bicycle tool. The Sullivan's Gulch Trail is an ambitious project currently in the concept planning stage that would consist of a multi-use path adjacent to an existing freeway and light rail corridor. Approximately five miles in length, the path would provide desirable connection opportunities to numerous densely populated neighborhoods and several key activity centers, including the Portland CBD.
The Sullivan's Gulch Trail was coded into the bicycle network and the regional transportation model was subsequently run. A number of metrics and graphics were produced to analyze the project's likely impacts with respect to trip-making decisions (i.e. mode choice) as well as spatial effects (i.e. route choice). Questions under consideration included, but were not limited to:
- Which spatial areas were impacted?
- How many new bicycle trips were generated?
- Where did trip diversion occur and what was the magnitude?
- How did the inclusion of the new facility affect the existing system?
This presentation will feature a brief overview of Portland Metro's suite of bicycle modeling tools and will provide a comprehensive summary of the Sullivan's Gulch Trail case study, including results, lessons learned, and future enhancements.