Cross-posted from streets.mn: The Fall and Rise of the I-35W Mississippi River Bridge – Part 6: Traffic
Travel behavior changes after network disruption as well as after the replacement of disrupted links are not well-understood. The first table shows the number of river crossing trips by type of facility before and after the collapse and the reopening.
We discover 46,000 lost trips daily after the collapse (nearly a third of what the I-35W Bridge had carried), and 20,000 found trips after the new bridge opened. Those lost trips may not have been made, or more likely, found different destinations not requiring a river crossing. This provides additional evidence to the phenomenon of induced demand.
|Bridge Collapses: 1-Aug-2007||Bridge Reopens: 18-Sep-2008|
|Bridge||Before||After||Change||Before Reopen||After Reopen||Change|
Gains from the Bridge for three peak periods re-estimated with accurate (observed) travel times (but fixed and not-observed OD matrix), shown in the second Table, were on the order of $70,000 per day (somewhat below our initial low all-day estimates ($127,000), far below Mn/DOT’s, and also below the contractor early completion bonus). Much of that gain is lost once the I-94 bridge lane disappears, as consistent with the original results. $42,000 annualizes to about $15 million in benefit, for a $250 million dollar bridge (which pays off in about 23 years at 3% interest). The I-94 lane restriping paid off in a matter of a month.