TRB 2016 Blue Ribbon Committee
16th National Transportation Planning Applications Conference

Assessing Transportation Interventions in Historical Cities through Microscopic Traffic Simulation, Case Study Byblos

Corresponding Author: Dima Jawad, Notre Dame University - Louize

Presented By: Dima Jawad, Notre Dame University - Louaize


Many of the world heritage cities on the Mediterranean sea today are characterized as centric or half-centric coastal cities where the nuclei is the historical core bounded by fortresses and the remains of ancient walls that tumbled throughout the ages. In the last two centuries, these unique cities has stretched beyond their ancient walls so as to adapt to modern life. With this sprawl, one of the major urban challenges that face these cities is providing the accessibility to and around the historic nuclei through efficient and heritage-sensitive transport system that will not jeopardize their built-heritage. This paper presents the research done with the objectives of developing a framework for defining identifying appropriate transport policies and mitigation measures that can be applied in historic cities with ancient cores. This framework will identify and develop a set of pertinent indicators that are vital for the sustainability of these cities, model solutions through macroscopic and microscopic traffic simulation, and then assess their results and impacts on the city. In this context, two software packages AIMSUN and Synchro are used to model and interpret the interventions’ outcomes through the set indicators such as emissions, delays and noise pollution. The developed framework is then applied to a case study, the city of Byblos. Byblos, one of oldest continuously inhabited city in the world, is today a thriving modern city with an ancient heart that is evolving as a prominent touristic hub. With its ancient port, Phoenician, Roman and Crusaders ruins, sandy beaches and the scenic mountains that mount it make it a perfect tourist destination. This vigorous city with dense population, dynamic tourism, numerous office building and crowded streets is threatened by its traffic congestion as well as threatening the unique built heritage in the historic core. In fact, the traffic congestion on Byblos road network is deteriorating the city’s attractiveness, its quality and living conditions as well as its accessibility. In this paper we present and discuss the development of the framework and then its application on Byblos case study including lessons learnt from the modelling of transportation various interventions, traffic simulation, and the outcome on the city of Byblos.

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