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Sustainability Of The Intersection In Ontario, Canada

952 words - 4 pages

The signalized intersection between Highway 12 and Pine Street in Ontario, Canada has been facing some challenges in its current design. Therefore, future analysis and design of the intersection should incorporate a suitable sustainability indicator to ensure that the intersection remains functional as a long-term solution. Perhaps the most important sustainability indicators for the intersection’s future analysis or evaluation should be traffic demand together with the future population (Litman 12). These sustainability indicators will ensure that the intersection remains safe and performs at an optimum level for the future based on how it is designed today.
The most significant challenge that the intersection has been facing is the traffic congestion due to the high number of vehicles that use it. Traffic congestion has made the intersection to be unsustainable due to wastage of fuel and time (Kockelman and Shabih 17). Future design of the intersection can be either sustainable or unsustainable depending on the strategies used to overcome this challenge. For example, expansion of the intersection to ease traffic congestion can be unsustainable (Litman 13). This is because the process will be expensive hence uneconomical. Expansion of the signalized intersection will also be a challenge due to the current layout of the site. Several expensive buildings that are situated in both Highway 12 and Pine Street will have to be demolished to pave way for the expansion. On the other hand, changing the intersection into a roundabout can be sustainable since there will be an increase in mobility and efficiency of vehicle travel. There has to be a change in design because the current intersection, which is a four-way intersection, has 32 conflict points. A typical round about has only eight conflict points, making it a suitable alternative to intersections (Smith 67).
The rising population of vehicles in Ontario has significantly reduced the sustainability of the current design layout of the intersection. A large number of vehicles, both trucks and cars, use the intersection at the same time (Kockelman and Shabih 17). This has led to loss of fuel, energy and time when vehicles, especially trucks, wait for their chance to clear the intersection. This is because drivers have to keep their vehicle engines on unnecessarily at the intersection. In addition, this challenge has led to increased travel costs due to reduced accessibility of vehicles to their destinations in time. The vehicular delays are even high during peak hours in this intersection. Therefore, future evaluation of the intersection should consider congestion and mobility as the most important design challenge. However, in the evaluation of congestion-reducing design strategies, civil engineers should adopt sustainable mechanisms. For example, design mechanisms that increase diversity in the transport system such as transit improvement will increase sustainability. On the other hand, those...

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