This report summarizes the methodology used by the Washington State Transportation Center in fulfillment of the requirements for the Washington State Department of Transportation grant "HOV Lane Monitoring and Evaluation Tool." This report describes the types of data collected, how the data was collected, and the uses of the data. This report then makes some preliminary findings based on the analysis to date. Designing a system for evaluating the performance of high occupancy vehicle lanes includes establishing methods for collection and analysis of vehicle occupancy, travel time, and public opinion data. Secondary sources include data on enforcement of HOV lane restrictions, accidents, and transit ridership.
The objective of this report is to identify the most effective and efficient method for collecting and analyzing the required data. Issues addressed in identifying the most appropriate methodology included the following: selecting data collection sites, developing a computer program to facilitate data collection and storage, management of traffic observers, scheduling, developing computer programs for auditing and analyzing data, developing a system for mailing public opinion surveys to commuters observed in the field, and analysis of the public opinion data.
It is important to note that this report concerns the development of a methodology and is not designed to be an authoritative analysis of the effectiveness of high occupancy vehicle lanes. The analysis of the data described in this report will be published in a forthcoming report for the companion project, "HOV Lane Evaluation and Monitoring."