Ex-post environmental and traffic assessment of a speed reduction strategy in Madrid's inner ring-road

Pérez Prada, Fiamma and Monzón de Cáceres, Andrés (2017). Ex-post environmental and traffic assessment of a speed reduction strategy in Madrid's inner ring-road. "Journal of Transport Geography" (n. 58); pp. 256-268. ISSN 0966-6923. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2016.12.018.

Description

Title: Ex-post environmental and traffic assessment of a speed reduction strategy in Madrid's inner ring-road
Author/s:
  • Pérez Prada, Fiamma
  • Monzón de Cáceres, Andrés
Item Type: Article
Título de Revista/Publicación: Journal of Transport Geography
Date: January 2017
ISSN: 0966-6923
Subjects:
Freetext Keywords: Traffic speed management; CO2 reduction; NOx reduction; Urban air pollution; Speed limits; Traffic operations; Traffic performance; Travel times; Emissions; Scenarios
Faculty: E.T.S.I. Caminos, Canales y Puertos (UPM)
Department: Ingeniería Civil: Transporte y Territorio
Creative Commons Licenses: Recognition - No derivative works - Non commercial

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Abstract

Since urban traffic is a major source of CO2 and NOx emissions, cities play a key role averting climate change and combating air pollution. Most researchers agree on the need of designing comprehensive mitigation strategies instead of applying isolated measures. Nevertheless, it is important to understand the specific impact and scope of each measure to look for the most effective synergies among them. In 2004, the Madrid City Council launched a plan to re-design its inner ring-road to move traffic out of the city centre. For safety reasons the planned speed limit for the full-renovated South-West sectionwas finally reduced from 90 km/h to 70 km/h. Besides contributing to traffic safety, this strategy could also be seen as positive to the environment due to the associated reduced fuel consumption and lower emissions. However, lower speed limits have lower rates of community acceptance due to its impact on average travel times at the individual level. This paper conducts an ex-post evaluation of this speed reduction strategy to explore its environmental and traffic performance impacts. The results support the thesis that, in this velocity range, lower speed limits present important opportunities for reducing GHG and air pollution in the section affected by the measure, without substantially altering traffic performance. The implementation of the new speed limit policy produces a 14.4% and 16.4% reduction in CO2 and NOx emissions respectively, while global travel time remains virtually constant and the saturation rate decreases slightly. Besides, this cost-effectivemeasure reveals great potential to reduce air pollution in highly populated urban areas located next to urban highways. Thiswork provides local policy makers and city managers with useful insights regarding potential co-benefits of traffic optimization and speed reduction management to reduce mobile source emissions in urban environments.

More information

Item ID: 44422
DC Identifier: http://oa.upm.es/44422/
OAI Identifier: oai:oa.upm.es:44422
DOI: 10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2016.12.018
Official URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0966692316302332
Deposited by: Memoria Investigacion
Deposited on: 08 Feb 2017 14:40
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2019 23:30
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