The Emergence of Hierarchy in Transportation Networks

Annals of Regional Science, Vol. 39, Vol. 3, pp. 541-553

23 Pages Posted: 11 Sep 2007

See all articles by Bhanu Yerra

Bhanu Yerra

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

David Matthew Levinson

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Abstract

A transportation network is a complex system that exhibits the properties of selforganization and emergence. Previous research in dynamics related to transportation networks focuses on traffic assignment or traffic management. This research concentrates on the dynamics of the orientation of major roads in a network and abstractly models these dynamics to understand the basic properties of transportation networks. A model is developed to capture the dynamics that leads to a hierarchical arrangement of roads for a given network structure and land use distribution. Localized investment rules - revenue produced by traffic on a link is invested for that link's own development - are employed. Under reasonable parameters, these investment rules, coupled with traveler behavior, and underlying network topology result in the emergence of a hierarchical pattern. Hypothetical networks subject to certain conditions are tested with this model to explore the network properties. Though hierarchies seem to be designed by planners and engineers, the results show that they are intrinsic properties of networks. Also, the results show that roads, specific routes with continuous attributes, are emergent properties of transportation networks.

Keywords: transportation network, dynamics, hierarchy

Suggested Citation

Yerra, Bhanu and Levinson, David Matthew, The Emergence of Hierarchy in Transportation Networks. Annals of Regional Science, Vol. 39, Vol. 3, pp. 541-553. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1012094

Bhanu Yerra

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities ( email )

420 Delaware St. SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

David Matthew Levinson (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN

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