San Antonio's Medical Center Corridor: Lessons Learned From The Metropolitan Model Deployment Initiative
This report is one in a series that documents lessons learned from the US DOT Model Deployment Initiatives program. It reviews one component of the San Antonio MDI - the integration of a highly successful freeway management system with a newly deployed arterial system.
The San Antonio Medical Center Corridor is approximately 5.4 miles long by 1.2 miles wide. Travelers often use this corridor when there is a disruption of traffic flow on the nearby Interstate Highways 10 and 410 (I-10 and I-410).
The goal of this implementation was to develop more effective, coordinated management of roadway incidents and their associated delays. The project would integrate the new arterial management system along the corridor's Fredericksburg Road with preexisting freeway management system on a 5.4 mile section of I-10 and I-410. The arterial management system would consist of 10 loop stations, three camera systems, nine dynamic message signs, and a new arterial operations work station. Transportation staffs also created incident response signal plans to control the increased flow of traffic caused by an incident.
The lessons concern the benefits of integrated ITS systems and the related institutional issues that must be overcome to achieve effective integration across involved transportation agencies.
The benefits of integrated ITS systems are mathematically greater than the sum of the benefits of the systems individually.
- Integrated systems can reduce delays, improve safety, and enhance customer satisfaction when deployed strategically. Furthermore, through simulation modeling it was revealed that expected benefits were greater than may be achieved by any single element of the management system acting alone. Thus, the hypothesis of greater benefits through ITS integration is supported.
- Applying an integrated strategy is substantially more effective at reducing delay than any of the various components of the system acting in isolation. Specifically, the impacts of the integrated Medical Center Corridor on traveler delay are nearly 25 percent greater than those affected by incident management alone, which is the most effective isolated element.
- Keep arterial operations and maintenance costs low by housing the operations center within the existing TransGuide operations center and taking advantage of the benefits offered by centralized staffing and maintenance plans.