Short-term prediction of outbound truck traffic from the exchange of information in logistics hubs: A case study for the port of Rotterdam

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Abstract

Short-term traffic prediction is an important component of traffic management systems. Around logistics hubs such as seaports, truck flows can have a major impact on the surrounding motorways. Hence, their prediction is important to help manage traffic operations. However, The link between short-term dynamics of logistics activities and the generation of truck traffic has not yet been properly explored. This paper aims to develop a model that predicts short-term changes in truck volumes, generated from major container terminals in maritime ports. We develop, test, and demonstrate the model for the port of Rotterdam. Our input data are derived from exchanges of operational logistics messages between terminal operators, carriers and shippers, via the local Port Community System. We propose a feed-forward neural network to predict the next one hour of outbound truck traffic. To extract hidden features from the input data and select a model with appropriate features, we employ an evolutionary algorithm in accordance with the neural network model. Our model predicts outbound truck volumes with high accuracy. We formulate 2 scenarios to evaluate the forecasting abilities of the model. The model predicts lag and non-proportional responses of truck flows to changes in container turnover at terminals. The findings are relevant for traffic management agencies to help improve the efficiency and reliability of transport networks, in particular around major freight hubs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103111
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalTransportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies
Volume127
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Artificial neural network
  • Container transport
  • Port community system
  • Short-term prediction
  • Truck traffic

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