The Capital District Transportation Committee (CDTC) and the Region 1 Office of the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) are sponsoring the development of an integrated transportation plan for the I-87/Route 9 Corridor located in the Capital District of New York State.
The study area covers I-87 and Route 9 between exits 2 and 15 including all the connecting roads as this stretch is located in a highly urbanized area and is where the Northway and Route 9 are mostly parallel. The study area falls within Albany and Saratoga Counties and numerous municipalities including the Town and Village of Colonie, the Towns of Clifton Park, Halfmoon, Malta and Wilton, the Village of Round Lake, and the City of Saratoga Springs. The primary focus of operations and area the VISSIM model will be covering is the Northway between Exits 2 and 10, Route 9 between Route 5 and Ushers Road, Old Wolf Road / Old Niskayuna Road /Wade Road between Albany Shaker Road and Route 7, and the east-west connecting routes in this area.
Study Goals and Objectives
The primary goal of the study is to reduce traffic congestion of I-87 within the study area through effective incident management derived from an integrated corridor management plan. Incident management is the planned, coordinated process of detecting and removing incidents to restore normal traffic operations as quickly as possible. Integrated corridor management recognizes that expressways, like the Northway, do not operate in isolation. The Northway is part of a larger travel corridor that includes Route 9, connecting arterials and collectors, and bus routes. From a holistic perspective, the goal is to optimize travel in the whole corridor, not just the Northway or Route 9. It is envisioned that to accomplish this, deployment of ITS resources throughout the corridor and across modes will be required.
Elements of an effective integrated corridor management plan include:
- Northway Incident Profile: Gather information available pertaining to Northway incidents to determine the magnitude of the current incident level and how it will increase 10-15 years in the future.
- US 9 Corridor Profile: Prepare a profile that provides a comprehensive but concise description of existing conditions within the corridor.
- Access Management: Examine the entire corridor and identify specific locations along the corridor that present opportunities for short, mid and long-term improvements such as consolidation of driveways and cross access opportunities.
- Traffic Operations: Recommend specific treatments to improve and monitor traffic flow along I-87, US Route 9 as well as the other roads connecting US Route 9 to I-87. Specific treatments will consider the dynamic nature of the entire corridor study area.
- Traffic Simulation Modeling: Develop a VISSIM model to be used as a decision aid for defining traffic diversion strategies and a methodology to determine the effects of various incident types on Northway traffic flow and of diversion on the arterial network.
- Transit Infrastructure and Service Opportunities: Prepare a conceptual transit infrastructure plan (rendering) that will demarcate pedestrian infrastructure, identify transit nodes as well as locate stops/stations, Transit Oriented Development (TOD) opportunities, intermodal facilities, and BRT features as this corridor is ultimately envisioned as a BRT corridor and is shown on the 100 mile BRT map.
- Incident Management: Identify and evaluate strategies and actions that would improve incident detection and verification, emergency response, management of on-site emergency personnel, clearance of vehicles and debris, and recovery to normal traffic flow.