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  • 1.  Impact of traffic congestion on productivity

    Posted 12-15-2016 09:56 AM

    I was talking with a fellow working as an executive managing director for one of the biggest shopping malls in our area right by the exit from one of the severely congested interstates. He was complaining about losing customers as a result of traffic congestion.  Are there any studies reporting business losses and how much value can be added to the region’s economy once this problem is addressed? 

    Hasan Ozer A.M.ASCE
    Research Assistant Professor
    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
    Champaign IL

  • 2.  RE: Impact of traffic congestion on productivity

    Posted 12-16-2016 07:34 AM

    Hello All

    We got similar situation where some business owners have some concerns when the city repaved the two-lane street into divided two lane street. Also, when the city removed the traffic light and have a single roundabout!

    Good question.


    Majed Al-Ghandour Ph.D., P.E., M.ASCE
    Manager - Engineering Manager
    Raleigh NC

  • 3.  RE: Impact of traffic congestion on productivity

    Posted 01-19-2017 08:39 PM
    The decline of sales at nation-wide large brick-and-mortar retailers has been primarily from internationally-focused online shopping retailers such as amazon.com. I believe a different business model for retailers (both online and brick-and-mortar) will emerge that would likely involve collaboration with an unexpected though entrenched player in another transportation space, such as vehicle manufacturer or ride-share platform. That would be an exciting wave to ride for whoever figures out and succeeds in implementing that model.

    Ranjit Sahai P.E., F.ASCE
    RAM Consulting Corporation
    Dulles, VA 20166

  • 4.  RE: Impact of traffic congestion on productivity

    Posted 02-01-2017 01:32 PM
    Enlightened subject - regions with higher realization of traffic flow efficiency and tax base contributions to an entity's economic well being consider traffic impacts more than backward regions.  However, I think that quantification is extremely variable and depends on many factors.  It will be very different comparing, e.g. the Galleria in Sherman Oaks with the Walmart Supercenter on I-35 in San Marcos, TX.  
    The only assessment of productivity I am aware of is from an FHWA construction traffic expert who spoke at a conference I went to.  He gave the valuation of traffic delays as approximately $10 per hour per vehicle.  So, if you have a daily flow of 2,500 vehicles and an average delay of 7 minutes, that would be a daily productivity (user) cost of ~$3,000.  Realistically that should be a part of Liquidated Damages.

    However, I'm not sure how traffic to a shopping center equates to productivity.  I think of productivity more in terms of adding value.

    Should definitely be a consideration when thinking about including work days in bids, liquidated damages, Design Build, etc. 

    Stephen Hemphill P.E., M.ASCE
    Rio Rancho NM