A general activity-based methodology for simulating multimodal transportation networks during emergencies

Jeroen van der Gun, Adam Pel, Bart van Arem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
41 Downloads (Pure)


Many possible emergency conditions, including evacuations, negatively affect the urban transportation system by substantially increasing the travel demand and/or reducing the supplied capacity. A transportation model can be used to quantify and understand the impact of the underlying disasters and corresponding management strategies. To this end, we develop an efficient methodology suitable for simulating multimodal transportation systems affected by emergencies, based on the novel integration of an activity-based choice model with both pre-trip and en-route choices, and a macroscopic or mesoscopic dynamic network loading model. The model structure first estimates the daily equilibrium and then uses that result as a starting point to simulate the emergency situation without further iterations. Unlike previous efforts, our methodology satisfies all requirements identified from literature regarding transportation modeling for emergencies, and is sufficiently general to investigate a wide range of emergency situations and management strategies. An evacuation case study for Delft shows the feasibility of applying the methodology. Furthermore, it yields practical insights for urban evacuation planning that stem from complex system dynamics, such as important interactions among travel directions and among modes. This supports the need for a comprehensive modeling methodology such as the one we present in this paper.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)490-511
Number of pages22
JournalEuropean Journal of Transport and Infrastructure Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 30 May 2016


  • urban emergencies
  • evacuation modeling
  • choice modeling
  • activity-based modeling
  • dynamic network loading
  • multimodal networks


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