This paper presents results of field studies conducted in Houston, Texas, to evaluate the performance of two innovative approaches for managing traffic during maintenance operations in the middle lane of an urban freeway. The two approaches, traffic shifting with use of the shoulder and traffic splitting, were used by District 12 of the Texas State Department of Highways and Public Transportation during pavement repairs on Interstate 45. The results of the studies indicate that, compared to the multilane closure strategy commonly used at middle-lane work sites (closure of an exterior lane and one or more adjacent middle lanes), both approaches significantly increased work-zone capacity. The studies revealed that (a) traffic shifting could be used to manage traffic at relatively long work sites on freeways with discontinuous shoulders and (b) shoulder use at sites where this strategy was employed was greatly influenced by traffic demand. Traffic splitting around an isolated, middle-lane work site, on the other hand, was used effectively at a relatively short work site on a freeway section that did not have shoulders.
Publisher: Transportation Research Board
Publication Date: 1979
Full Text URL: Link to URL
Publication Types: Books, Reports, Papers, and Research Articles
Topics: Maintenance Practices; Temporary Traffic Control; Urban Highways; Work Zone Capacity