Buying Into the Bypass: Allowing Trucks to Pay to Use the Ramp Meter Bypasses
This paper analyzes the opening of a high occupancy vehicle (HOV) ramp meter bypass to trucks that pay a toll. Trucks are similar to HOVs as both have higher values of time than single-occupant cars. Thus, a time saving for these vehicles benefits the transportation system. Using queuing analysis, tolls maximizing user benefit, toll authority profit, and system benefit were estimated. It is found that to maximize system welfare, trucks should be allowed free use of the bypass, but that raises some equity and operational issues. However, a toll that allows trucks to use the bypass improves the welfare over prohibiting them.