Forecasting and Evaluating Network Growth

David Levinson, Feng Xie, Norah M. Oca

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


This research assesses the implications of existing trends on future network investment, comparing alternative scenarios concerning budgets and investment rules. The main scenarios compare "stated decision rules", processes encoded in flowcharts and weights developed from official documents or by discussion with agency staff, with "revealed decision rules", weights estimated statistically based on observed historical behavior. This research specifies the processes necessary to run the network forecasting models with various decision rules. We find that given the relatively small amount of funds available for network growth in a mature system, alternative decision rules make only small differences in overall system performance, though they direct investments to very different locations and affect the trip time and spatial accessibility in a significantly different way.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)239-262
Number of pages24
JournalNetworks and Spatial Economics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2012
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This material is based in part upon work supported by the US National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0236396. This research was also supported by the Minnesota Department of Transportation research project “Beyond Business as Usual: Ensuring the Network We Want is the Network We Get”.


  • Decision-making
  • Evaluation
  • Forecasting
  • Network growth
  • The Twin Cities


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