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February 2007 Archives

February 1, 2007

Les Arteries d'NYC

The Arteries of New York

Old school. What surprises me most is how equanimous it is towards all the modes -- car, subway, bus. Check the researchers at the end. Could be me some day...

February 11, 2007

Feelin' the Flow (NYC Traffic Data, and more)

Who knew that there was such a wealth of statistical data published about traffic flows in NYC? You can't yet get the count for every corner, but if you're interested in people coming in and out of Manhattan, you're in luck.

The first place to look is the The New York Metropolitan Transportation Council (NYMTC) Data and Model page. Most detailed is probably the Hub Bround Report which goes into ridiculous detail about, unsurprisingly, people entering the Hub (Manhattan below 60th street). On the average business day in 2003, how many people entered Manhattan on the N train between 9 and 10AM? 10,031 of course. On the L train? 21,336 (which, if you recall from this chart, is about a third more than a 7 lane freeway).

The NYC Department of Transportation Publications Page is also a good source -- New York City Bridge Traffic Volumes, Bicyclist Fatalities and Serious Injuries, and more.

Gee, all this would be really useful if you were, for example, trying to build a rough model of the effects of a London-like Congestion Pricing scheme for the NYC core...

February 28, 2007

Congestion Pricing, Positioning, and Meshed Wireless Networks

As part of my internship at the Regional Plan Association I was asked to research the applicability of mesh networks to congestion pricing for New York City. What follows is the result of several days of reading, surfing the web, talking on the phone, and stroking my chin. It assumes some knowledge on the topic, most of which can be found in descriptions of London's Congestion Charge, upon which any scheme in New York is likely to be based.

Primary Questions

  • What about London's CC scheme do we not like?
  1. Pricing is not very flexible. No variability of charge over time or space (i.e. path)
  2. For the most part, only charged for crossing the boundary into the zone
  3. Post-payment (i.e. account-based billing) is impossible
  • What would we do the same in a first implementation?
  1. Charge people for driving within a certain area during a certain time period
  2. Use cameras to charge people who opt out of any other system, i.e. cheaters and tourists
  • What would we want to do differently, ?
  1. Charge people with accounts, like EZ Pass
  2. Charge people who do not cross the zone-charging boundary (i.e. remain entirely within the zone)
  • What would it take, from a technologic perspective, to do it as we prefer?
  1. Substantially higher accuracy of detection
  2. Detection within the zone, not just at its edges
  • What technologies and approaches are likely candidates to be considered?
  1. Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR, cameras reading license plates, like london) for enforcement
  2. Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC, like EZ Pass) for point detection for account-holders
  3. GPS positioning for area-wide detection
  4. Wireless Positioning System (WPS -- TV/WiFi/GSM) for area-wide detection
  5. Wifi/Mesh Networks for communications
  • What sort of physical footprint or envelope, both in the vehicle and on the streets, would we expect for each different solution?

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About February 2007

This page contains all entries posted to Frumination in February 2007. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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