Investigating and analyzing factors affecting lane-capacity variations in the roadway network in Baton Rouge, LA Measures for Mitigating Traffic Congestion

Traffic congestion, with its resulting unreliable transportation system performance, is a major impediment to sustainable economic growth, productivity, and urban area vitality. Baton Rouge is listed as the third worst for moderate- average-sized urban areas in the category of average commuter annual traffic delay. Lane capacity is usually one of the characteristics roadway facilities are based upon, and the lack of understanding of such characteristic could be one of the main reasons leading to congestion. The actual capacity value of a roadway facility tends to fluctuate depending on several factors such as the number of lanes in the roadway, facility type, area type, weather conditions, crossing pedestrians, and the number of intersections along the roadway among many others. Understanding these factors and the subsequent behavior of the transportation network is a crucial step for a successful traffic management process, even at emergency times. To the research team's knowledge, there is no documented effort to study factors affecting lane capacity in the State of Louisiana. This could be one reason that the transportation network sometimes underperforms to serve the traffic demand especially at emergency times and special events. Therefore, this study aims to identify the factors affecting lane capacity within the Baton Rouge transportation network with the aim to provide policy and decision makers greater insight of the city’s transportation infrastructure to make data-driven decisions.