1LJV 13 newsletter
Center for Multimodal Solutions for Congestion Mitigation
ressac e f0 e
Welcome to the inaugural issue of the CMS
Newsletter. We at the University of Florida are very
honored to have been awarded a Tier 1 University
Transportation Center. In the years to come, I
anticipate a flurry of activity at the Center for
Multimodal Solutions for Congestion Mitigation
as we work with the transportation community to
investigate and develop innovative approaches to
solving congestion problems.
Our vision for the center is crystal clear: We will
develop a strong interdisciplinary network of
researchers, fully integrated within UF, to develop
solutions that will focus on enhanced multimodal
connectivity and coordination, accessibility,
system interoperability and transportation
community outreach. We also feel a strong sense
of responsibility to the future workforce of the
transportation community. Our plans in this
area include expanding the pool of transportation
professionals by supporting curricula in a wide
range of disciplines that have bearing on the
solutions to transportation problems.
It has been a very busy couple of months at the
CMS. The center's faculty and staffhave been
intensely working on developing procedures,
implementing plans and coordinating activities
among several departments across UF. Our
strategic plan was approved in early October,
thanks to the collaborative effort of the CMS's
Internal Steering Committee and others.
The ISC has been meeting once a month to
implement plans for soliciting pre-proposals
on research, education and technology transfer
activities. On October 19, the CMS successfully
issued its first request for pre-proposals. We had
an impressive amount of high-quality research
proposals submitted, which the ISC is currently
in the process of evaluating with the assistance
of several reviewers. Selections from this pool of
pre-proposals will yield full proposal invitations.
We expect that the first round of projects will start
by February 1, 2008.
This academic year, we began our recruiting
activities on November 6 with an informational
session at UF, and we had one in early December
at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. As part
of our recruitment efforts, we will award up to
five assistantships to incoming graduate students
in transportation and up to three dissertation
assistantships for students who have been accepted
into doctoral candidacy and are completing their
These dissertation assistantships can be used
to fund specific data collection needs or other
activities that are not typically funded by
Student selection for these
assistantships will begin
in spring 2008. Other
recruitment efforts include
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CMS Visits the Florida
CMS affiliated faculty and staff met with a group
of about 30 Florida Department of Transportation
personnel on October 9, 2007, at the main FDOT
headquarters in Tallahassee.
The reasons for the visit were to learn about FDOT
research priorities and needs, present UF transportation-
related strengths and capabilities, identify areas of
common interest, and to begin to foster partnerships.
FDOT is providing the CMS with matching research
funds up to $1 million.
The meeting began with a presentation from CMS
Director Lily Elefteriadou. She discussed the center's
overall goals, operational structure, and research
capabilities. Elefteriadou's talk was followed by
presentations from CMS affiliated faculty. The affiliates
described their research programs and discussed current
The affiliates included a number of UF faculty
members notably Scott Washburn, Yafeng Yin and Siva
Srinivasan, of the Transportation Research Center in
Civil Engineering; Janet Degner ofT2; Siriphong (Toi)
Lawphongpanich of Industrial and Systems Engineering;
and Ruth Steiner, who, in addition to herself, represented
seven colleagues from Urban and Regional Planning.
Jennifer Fortunas (right) of the FDOT discusses research ideas with
industrial and systems Associate Professor Siriphong Lawphongpanich
(center) and civil engineering Associate Professor Yafeng Yin (left).
Lily Elefteriadou talks about Interchange Ramp Terminals to a group of
After the CMS presentations, the floor was opened
to representatives from FDOT offices of design,
environmental management, policy planning, public
transportation, research, safety, systems planning,
traffic operations, and transportation statistics. Each
representative highlighted research priorities and needs
and then met one-on-one with the UF researchers.
Elefteriadou was extremely pleased with the outcome.
"This was a good opportunity to cultivate a strong
relationship with the FDOT, especially for those
affiliates who do not have specific FDOT contacts and
projects," Elefteriadou said.
The overall visit was valuable, and the interaction
between UF researchers and FDOT personnel was
charged with much energy and enthusiasm.
Doug McLeod of FDOT Systems Planning Office felt
the meeting was productive.
"To see the level of participation from the FDOT offices
was outstanding," McLeod said. "There was a lot of
interaction between FDOT and UF professors that
could lead to many projects in the future."
Representation from the various offices also helped
FDOT personnel better understand common research
interests and how UF and FDOT might better serve
Florida in addressing congestion, he said.
McLeod is a longtime collaborator with the
transportation faculty in the Department of Civil &
Coastal Engineering. He has worked with Elefteriadou
and her associates on various projects. He is very
confident about the quality of research originating from
"I have been pleased to work with them," McLeod said.
"They produce some of the best research products for the
NCHRP Project 3-85: Guidance for
the Use of Alternative Traffic Analysis
Tools in Highway Capacity Analyses
Recognizing that many traffic analysts use a combination of
Highway Capacity Manual and non-HCM based tools for highway
capacity analyses, the National Cooperative Highway Research
Program has initiated Project 3-85 to develop practical and useful
guidance for the use of other tools, either in combination with, or
instead of, the HCM. The University of Florida Transportation
Research Center and T-Concepts Corp are carrying out the project.
This project will be of interest to traffic analysts because it will
produce guidance for the use of simulation tools for evaluating the
performance of highway facilities. The guidance developed by this
project will be incorporated into the 2010 edition of the HCM.
The major project tasks are as follows:
Survey of Current Practice
An Internet-based survey of current practice was conducted and the
results have been posted on the project web site. The survey focused
on the limitations of the HCM and the current use of alternative
traffic analysis tools to overcome these limitations. Respondents were
asked to indicate their degree of satisfaction with the HCM and to
point out the most critical areas for improvement.
Identification and Comparison of Alternative Tools
Several traffic analysis tools, both analytical and simulation-based,
are commonly used for highway capacity analyses. A selection
of these tools has been examined and compared with respect to
their definitions, computational methodology, inputs, outputs and
To understand the differences in the performance measures reported
by various tools, it was necessary to conduct basic experiments to
examine the relationships between the inputs and outputs associated
with each tool.
The findings of these experiments will help to identify situations
where differences in definitions or computational methodology will
make it difficult to compare the performance measures produced by
the HCM with those produced by alternative tools.
Development of General Guidance
General guidance on the use of alternative tools will be developed
as a separate chapter for the 2010 HCM. The proposed topics
include traffic modeling concepts and definitions, appropriate use
of alternative tools, performance measures from alternative tools,
application guidelines for simulation tools, traffic analysis tool
selection criteria, use of vehicle trajectory analysis in comparing
performance measures, stochastic aspects of simulation analysis and
application framework for alternative tools.
Development of Chapter-Specific Guidance
Each procedural chapter with potential applications for alternative
tools will contain a section that provides succinct guidelines for the
use of alternative tools. The organization of the material for each
chapter covers the following topics:
* Strengths of the HCM procedure
* Limitations of the HCM procedures that might be addressed by
Development of HCM-compatible performance measures using
Conceptual differences between the HCM and simulation
modeling that preclude direct comparison of results
Calibration of simulation parameters to the HCM parameters
Step by step instructions for applying alternative tools
Sample calculations illustrating alternative tool applications
Expansion of the HCMAG
One of the tasks in this project will focus on the expansion of
the case studies in the Highway Capacity Manual Applications
Guidebook. The HCMAG was developed under NCHRP Project
3-64 to illustrate how the HCM and other tools can be used to
analyze traffic operations.
The current HCMAG document presents five case studies, each of
which contains several problems dealing with the use of the HCM
procedures as well as alternative tools.
Several simulation-based problems will be added to the existing case
studies to incorporate some of the results of this project. A totally
new case study based on corridor simulation tools, will also be added
to illustrate the use of such tools to augment or replace the HCM
The HCMAG is available on the Internet at www.hcmguide.com as
a readily accessible HTML document.
Traffic congestion is a severe problem that threatens the
economic prosperity and quality of life in many societies.
Congestion in the 85 largest U.S. urban areas caused a loss of
approximately 3.7 billion hours and 2.3 billion gallons of fuel in
2003, or the rough equivalent of $63 billion, according to the
Texas Transportation Institute.
Reducing traffic congestion has been an ongoing effort of
many governmental authorities over the past several decades. In
May 2006, the U.S. Department of Transportation launched
a new national congestion relief initiative that called for new
technologies and innovative ideas for congestion mitigation, and
Yafeng Yin, an assistant professor in the Department of Civil
and Coastal Engineering, is working hard to answer that call.
With a proper blend of theory and practice, Yin hopes to make
congestion pricing, a market-based approach first introduced in
1920 by an economist for controlling congestion and managing
travel demand, more pragmatic and publicly acceptable.
Recently funded by the National Science Foundation and in
collaboration with Siriphong Lawphongpanich, an associate professor
in the UF Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering,
Yin is investigating the rigorous framework and methodologies
necessary for developing pricing schemes amenable to gaining
public acceptance and leading to sustainable (environmentally and
otherwise) transportation systems.
This research represents a departure from the principle commonly
advocated and seeks a congestion pricing scheme that makes no one
worse or better off, and aims at reducing both congestion and traffic
emissions. The latter is essential to achieving an environmentally
sustainable transportation system.
Yin also hopes his self-learning dynamic pricing approach can be
applied to improve the current practice of managed or HOT lanes,
a centerpiece of Federal Highway Administration's Value Pricing
Pilot Program (FDOT plans to open HOT lanes on Interstate 95
between Fort Lauderdale and Miami next year). Yin's idea is to
estimate motorists' willingness to pay by their lane choices as well as
predict the short-term traffic demand. This would be done by mining
the data collected from strategically-located traffic sensors. The toll
rates would then be optimized for the subsequent rolling horizon to
maximize the freeway throughput, while ensuring the managed lanes
stay free from congestion.
But Yin's research program extends beyond congestion pricing. He
is also looking at ways to improve transportation decision making
under demand and supply uncertainty.
"Virtually every decision in transportation planning and
management is made under uncertainty," Yin said. "When
the consequence of ignoring uncertainty is severe, we need to
proactively address it in the decision-making process. The notion
of robust optimization may be helpful to obtain a robust decision,
whose performance may be less sensitive to any realization of the
Yin says that the key is to view nature as neither friend nor enemy,
but somewhere in between.
"It may not be cost effective to design a transportation system against
a worst-case scenario that may occur with a very slim chance," he
Yin also collaborates with his colleagues at the department, Scott
Washburn and Lily Elefteriadou, on impacts of lane closures on
roadway capacity, and with Siva Srinivasan on time-of-day travel
Before arriving at UF in 2005, Yin was an assistant
research engineer with the California Partners for
Advanced Transit and Highways at the University of
California, Berkeley. He also served as a lecturer at
Tsinghua University in China from 1996 to 1999. Yin
received both his bachelor's and master's degrees from
Tsinghua University in 1994 and 1996, respectively and
earned his Ph.D. from the University of Tokyo, Japan in
As a junior faculty member in the Department of Civil
and Coastal Engineering, Yin is working hard to make
substantial contributions to the field.
Back in China
Born in Huishui, a small town in the Guizhou Province
of southwest China, he is one of three highly educated
brothers with advanced degrees in engineering or
medicine. His parents are both physicians who worked
at a hospital in Huishui. They are both retired and live in
Yin's interest in transportation dates back to his senior
year as an undergraduate student at Tsinghua University.
While assisting a civil engineering professor with a
travel demand modeling study, he soon realized that he
enjoyed the field of transportation and began graduate
studies in that area.
"The motivation initially was to make some money and
get access to computers, but the experience turned out
to be rewarding," Yin said. "Later on, when I applied to
graduate schools, I did not like much experimenting with
concrete and steel, so logically I chose transportation."
Transportation according to Yin
Transportation engineering is a discipline that involves
the understanding of multiple discipline areas in
order to correctly diagnose and treat various corridor
infrastructure problems. Yin says that cross-disciplinary
collaboration is important.
"The transportation system is very complicated,
involving humans, socioeconomic factors, and
infrastructure," Yin said. "Therefore, solving
transportation issues always requires knowledge from
multiple disciplines, such as civil/transportation
engineering, urban planning, economics, operations
research, communication, sociology and others."
The use of advanced information technologies such
as telecommunications and ITS have provided
many opportunities to better manage and improve
transportation systems, and he foresees a fundamental
change in the way transportation systems are financed
"For example, gasoline taxes may be gone and a pay-as-
you-go scheme will be likely imposed," he said.
The wise educator
Yin enjoys teaching, and he is especially thrilled when his
students understand a difficult concept he has explained
But Yin takes his teaching philosophy one step further
by encouraging students to acquire knowledge outside
the classroom. Yingyan Lou, a doctoral student working
under the guidance of Yin, explains.
"Dr. Yin does not restrict his students to a certain area,"
Lou said. "Instead, he encourages students to broaden
their perspectives of transportation by attending various
seminars to exchange knowledge with fellow students
by organizing a reading club, which has been held by his
group each Friday for the past year."
Lou considers Yin an excellent engineer and scientist
because he is enthusiastic about the subject, has
deep knowledge in his chosen field and possesses
innovativeness and persistence.
Yin is currently supervising five doctoral students, a
master's student, and serves as co-adviser to another two
master's students. It is the partner-like treatment of his
graduate students that pleases Lou.
"Dr. Yin treats his students as co-workers and encourages
students to think independently," Lou said. "He gives
useful instructions and advice and actually sets up a good
example himself in how to do research professionally,
which I think is the most important skill one should
develop during graduate study."
For students contemplating a career in transportation
engineering, Yin advises that a holistic approach is
essential for succeeding in the field.
"You may want to try to equip yourself with a wide
range of skills in school, particularly those technical
and quantitative skills from transportation engineering,
economics, operations research and statistics," Yin said.
And as for the Transportation Research Center and the
CMS, Yin is pleased.
"I feel fortunate to join the transportation program
at the University of Florida, which takes pride in its
distinguished faculties as well as its world reputation as
an outstanding research institution," Yin said.
The CMS held its first annual picnic at
Lake Wauberg on October 14, 2007, in
conjunction with the UF Transportation
Research Center. Over 30 faculty, students,
staff and their families attended.
The weather was perfect for a mid-October
picnic in Florida. Colleagues, students and
families enjoyed a spread ofbarbequed
chicken, hotdogs, vegetarian patties, baked L _z-
beans, potato salad and coleslaw. The meal To the right, Lily Elefteriadou, Director of the TRC and CMS, serves cake to some eager hands
was followed by a huge cake sporting the TRC at the pavilion in Lake Wauberg. Lakshmi Balasubramanian (in the center), stands ready with
logo, the sponsor of the picnic. her camera.
With appetites satisfied, guests enjoyed the many
activities available to them at Lake Wauberg such as
paddle boating, playing touch football, walking along
the lake or simply reading a book by the water's edge.
Dimitra Michalaka, 23, a first year graduate student,
enjoyed the picnic and feels that such gatherings are vital
for group camaraderie.
"This event is important because it makes everyone feel
more united," Michalaka said. "I liked it very much that
we had the chance to meet the families of our professors."
Scott Washburn, an associate professor in the
Department of Civil & Coastal Engineering, was pleased
with the participation and echoed Michalaka's feeling on
"We had a great turnout this year, probably a 25 percent
increase over last year-a reflection on the growth of our
transportation education and research program," he said.
"This kind of social activity helps students, staff, and
faculty get to know each other better, which ultimately
helps with communication and collaboration in the work
Washburn says his
family enjoyed the
picnic. His son Davis,
8, and daughter Sydney,
5, had the best time
playing with the other
children at the picnic.
"We look forward to
an even bigger turnout
next year," he said.
Lake Wauberg is eight
miles south of campus
on U.S. 441. It is an
park owned and
operated by UF.
Guests enjoy a relaxing time after satisfying their appetites. Students gather
in the background in preparation for various activities.
UF GeoPlan Center Assists In
Transportation Planning Decisions
31 _- UO Land
For more than 20 years, the University
of Florida Geo-Facilities Planning and
Information Research Center, or GeoPlan,
has provided a teaching and research
environment for Geographic Information
Systems and for advanced spatial analysis.
The center, which was established in the
Department of Urban & Regional Planning
in the College of Design, Construction
and Planning, brings together researchers
throughout campus to work on a diverse
array of research projects and grants.
The research at the center provides powerful
tools to community leaders and decision-
makers in areas such as land use and
transportation. Many of the research projects
are supported by the Florida Geographic
"This data library, where professionals,
researchers, students and community leaders
throughout the state can 'check out' spatial
Wm. cf ift
li u~~u~nw L s
data, is valuable to Florida and allows for
the data to be organized in a standardized
format that fits the needs of the state
agencies," center director and urban and
regional planning professor Paul Zwick
said. "The data provided in the library is
compatible across platforms and systems,
comes complete with documentation about
its development and use, and is available for
download on the FGDL Web site free of
One of the research projects that relies
on the FGDL's data is the Efficient
Transportation Decision-Making project.
ETDM resulted from "environmental
streamlining" legislation passed by Congress
as part of the Transportation Equity Act for
the 21st Century.
"The ETDM process redefines how Florida
accomplishes transportation planning and
project development," ETDM principal
investigator Alexis Thomas said.
SThe overall intent of the
process is to improve
making in a way that
protects both human and
natural environments. The
approach includes active
participation of federal, state
and local agencies and the
Early in the transportation
planning process, resource
agencies and the public
interact with transportation
planners to identify potential
bi^ I effects that the project may
Shave on the community and
Ld natural resources. Agencies
also identify avoidance
prescribe technical studies
to be accomplished by the
Florida Department of
the project is ongoing.
Another research project, Land Use Conflict
Identification Strategy applies the FGDL
data for land use visualization and analysis.
LUCIS examines the conflict between the
lands preferred for agriculture, conservation
and urban development and helps to identify
areas of greatest conflict.
From this conflict analysis, researchers create
different land use scenarios based on clearly
articulated sets of assumptions allowing for
the comparison of alternatives.
Developed by Zwick and landscape
architecture professor Peggy Carr, LUCIS
serves as a tool for community decision-
making. The modeling process also serves as
a tool for other researchers.
"LUCIS can identify land use configurations
that will lessen the impact of congestion
and identify opportunities for multi-modal
planning," Ruth Steiner, an urban and
regional planning professor who is affiliated
with the center, said.
History and literature were not her favorite subjects
in high school. But math and physics fascinated her, and
they made sense. And in her quest to find the perfect
school, Alexandra Kondyli soon found herself immersed
in everything engineering.
"At the top of my list were all engineering schools, and
especially surveying and civil engineering, and that's
because I liked the idea of combining work outside
and taking measurements in the field with work in
the office," Kondyli, 28, a doctoral student in the UF
Department of Civil & Coastal Engineering, said. She
is affiliated with the Center for Multimodal Solutions for
Kondyli, a native of Athens, Greece, became interested
in transportation while majoring in surveying at
the National Technical University of Athens. The
curriculum included courses in transportation, and most
of them were related to geometric design and traffic
"So, in the beginning, when I first took those courses,
I really liked them, and I focused on them and did my
thesis in that area," Kondyli said.
Her undergraduate research project was on the
study of traffic operations in Greek freeways using
photogrammetric techniques. In Greece, as in many
other European countries, undergraduate students work
on a thesis as part of their graduation requirements. In
engineering schools the Greek bachelor's degree is called
a diploma, and it is a 5-year program.
Living in America
Coming to the United States, however, had never been
a viable option for Konlyli. She knew she wanted to
pursue graduate studies but wanted to stay closer to
home. Never did she imagine that her academic goals
would take her an ocean away to a different continent
with a new culture and a new language.
Kondyli applied to civil engineering programs in the
United States only after meeting with Lily Elefteriadou,
associate professor at UF and the CMS director.
"Dr. Elefteriadou had come to Greece to give a seminar
and meet with students from our department, so
I requested to meet with her." Kondyli said. "She
explained to me a lot of things such as how the process
works in U.S. universities and what the graduate
program is like, how long it takes, how is life in U.S.,
and things like that, so she encouraged me to apply."
Thus began her experience as a graduate student in this
country, which has been overwhelmingly positive, but
not without challenges.
Cultural differences and having few acquaintances made
it difficult for her in the beginning, but soon enough,
friendships blossomed and she became more comfortable
As for her graduate studies, the challenges there were
different. Kondyli had to strike a balance between a
nine-credit course load and her research.
"Courses take lot of your time, so you have to start by
doing some management of your time," she said. "I've
come to understand that the key to becoming successful
is time management and adhering to your schedule. I'm
trying to move toward this direction, to have a balance
between my personal life and school and research."
The Work Begins
Kondyli arrived at UF in fall 2004 and started to
work on her master's degree under the guidance of
Elefteriadou. Her project was on the development of an
arterial link travel-time model with the consideration of
The scope of the project was to explain the delays that
occur in an arterial link by looking at factors that
contribute to traffic backups such as vehicle turning
maneuvers and interactions, as well as the presence of
buses and parking activity. Her research has led to a
series of calculations used for estimating this arterial
mid-block delay. She received her master's degree in
Kondyli continues to work under Elefteriadou. For her
doctoral dissertation, she is developing a model that
will consider how a driver's behavior will affect freeway
operations on ramps. Kondyli will be measuring the
effects of merging maneuvers on freeway traffic, which
can eventually contribute to a breakdown on the
"You have lots of turbulence there with people slowing
down trying to avoid ramp vehicles or even changing
lanes, or because the ramp vehicles may force their way
and cause others to decelerate," Kondyli said.
For her study, Kondyli will recruit research volunteers
to drive on ramps and onto the freeway. To understand
freeway merging decisions, she will interview volunteers
after they complete various assigned tasks.
"It really depends on driver behavior such as the
degree of aggressiveness that each one has and also
the perception of other peoples' speeds," Kondyli said.
"The smoothness of traffic flow relies also on driver
population. It's the small interactions between vehicles
that make traffic breakdown."
She is hoping to complete her dissertation by spring
A Model Student
Kondyli is in her third year at UF, and she is a real
cheerleader for the transportation program. As a
student, she has attended conferences and networked
with people in academia, government agencies and
industry. The transportation program has funded all of
"Students will be very fortunate to come here because
this is a very strong program and faculty are extremely
knowledgeable in their areas," Kondyli said. "This
program has started to build very quickly, and we are
one of the important groups within civil engineering
in this school, which at a national level is gaining
Much of the success also stems from the strong ties
and collaboration that exists among the Transportation
Research Center, the CMS and the Florida Department
of Transportation, including national institutes such as
the Transportation Research Board, she said.
In her spare time, Kondyli will go to the gym or exercise
at home, watch movies with her friends or read. She is
hoping to brush up on her piano skills and plans to buy a
But her favorite pastime is visiting family and friends
in Greece, where she can eat her favorite foods such as
Moussaka and Spanakopita and hang out with friends in
Her life in Gainesville hasn't been too bad, either.
"It has a lot of options, the climate is good, there are
different things to see, the beaches are close, and there is
a lot of excitement during football," Kondyli said. "I like
the whole mentality of the game, it's like a fiesta."
Alexandra Kondyli (forefront) discusses her doctoral project with first year master's
student Dimitra Michalaka (center) and doctoral student Cuie Lu (left).
UF ISE junior Joanna Sanford and Associate Professor Ruth Steiner of urban and
regional planning enjoy a sandwich from Roly Poly while discussing graduate
A group of students attended an information
session held on campus by the CMS on November 6,
2007. This was the center's first event geared toward
recruiting qualified graduate students.
The information session provided an overview of the
center's various research areas and affiliated departments,
including funding opportunities and the UF graduate
school application process.
"I think events like this benefit students because they're
a great way to learn a little more about something we
might be interested in," Joanna Sandford, 21, a junior in
the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering,
said. "It's also more efficient than constantly asking
my advisor questions or trekking all across campus to
different advisors to ask questions that I might not even
know what to ask to get the information I want."
Sandford is interested in urban and regional planning.
She had a chance to speak with Ruth Steiner, an
associate professor from that department.
"I am excited that there may be opportunities in other
areas besides CCE. This event helped answer the
questions I had and put me in contact with some people
I could contact to learn more," Sandford said.
CMS Director Lily Elefteriadou addresses a crowd of
students at the information session.
Representatives from other CMS affiliated departments
such as civil engineering and industrial and systems
engineering were also present to answer questions and to
speak to students.
Mike Funk, the academic services coordinator for
industrial and systems engineering, and also a recruiter
for the College of Engineering, is often invited to attend
recruitment sessions at UF. He commented on the
effectiveness of the CMS's information session.
"I think the info session for the Congestion
Mitigation Center was a great success," Funk said.
"It brought students together from many different
engineering disciplines to look at how they can use an
interdisciplinary skill set to bring progress to the area of
The CMS welcomed Ines Aviles-
Spadoni as the new center's coordinator/
manager this August.
Aviles-Spadoni has worked at UF for the
past eight years and has managed various *
programs on campus. She is enthusiastic
about being part of the CMS.
"Starting a new center certainly has its
challenges, but that is the exciting part,"
Aviles-Spadoni said. "And having the
opportunity to strategize, create, and
implement is what makes this position so
Since August, she has worked relentlessly
with CMS Director Lily Elefteriadou on
launching various activities described in the
center's Strategic Plan and, so far, the effort
has paid off.
"Already, a call for proposals has been
issued, and we have recruitment activities
planned for the remainder of this year,"
Aviles-Spadoni said. "Also, we had a very
productive visit with the folks at the FDOT
in early October, and we have many, many
other projects that are moving along nicely."
Aviles-Spadoni says she enjoys working with
Elefteriadou and feels it is a true team effort.
"A consequence of that synergy has been
some extremely good progress in such a
short amount of time," she said.
Aviles-Spadoni says she likes interacting
with the CMS faculty, students, and staff.
Her goal is to assist Elefteriadou in making
the CMS one of the nation's top Tier 1
Grant Funded Transportation centers in the
The Institute of Transportation
Engineers (ITE) Student Chapter
won an award for best student
poster at the ITE District Meeting
in Orlando in November. The
poster, presented by Yingyan Lou,
was entitled "Dynamic Tolling
Strategies for Managed Lanes."
Message from the Director- Continuedfrom page 1
our summer internship program, which is
geared specifically toward undergraduate
The internship program is open to students
from colleges and universities across the
U.S. The objective of the program is
to provide undergraduate students the
opportunity to conduct independent
research in transportation under the
guidance of a faculty member and in
collaboration with other graduate and
The Distinguished Lecture in
Transportation Series started last spring,
and our first presenter was Samer Madanat
from the University of California at
Berkeley. Madanat's presentation was
entitled "Optimization of Maintenance
and Replacement Policies for a System of
Heterogeneous Infrastructure Facilities."
Fred Mannering of Purdue University on
We have a very active seminar program
with several seminars held approximately
once or twice a month with speakers from
the public and private sector, academia and
On October 9, we visited the Florida
Department of Transportation, and it was a
great success. During this meeting, several
UF researchers visited with the various
FDOT offices to discuss UF's research
capabilities in transportation and to hear
more about their research priorities. A
total of approximately 30 UF researchers
and FDOT personnel participated at the
meeting, which generated several new ideas
and potential research topics.
We are now in the process of planning our
activities during the Annual Meeting of
the Transportation Research Board, which
will take place January 13-17, 2008, in
Washington, D.C. and will be attended by
several of our faculty, staff and students.
UF's reception will take place on Monday,
January 14, 2008 from 5:30 to 7:30p.m. at
the Mezzanine at the Marriott Wardman
Park Hotel. We are also planning for our
first External Advisory Board meeting and
annual conference, which will take place
in spring 2008. Finally, we are working on
the CMS Web site, which is expected to be
completed in January.
I invite you to review the articles inside
this inaugural newsletter, which highlight
our recent activities, and if you have any
questions or suggestions please do not
hesitate to contact us.
Center for Multimodal Solution for Congestion Mitigation
512 Weil Hall
P.O. Box 116580
Gainesville, FL 32611-6580
Phone: 352.392.9537, Ext. 1450
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