Hybrid Traffic Simulation with Adaptive Signal Control

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

operations - traffic, infrastructure - stop


VISSIM (Computer model), Travel time, Traffic stops, Traffic simulation, Traffic models, Traffic flow, Traffic delay, Stockholm (Sweden), Signalization, Signalisation, Signal control, Microsimulation, Microscopic traffic flow, Mezzo (Computer model), Mesoscopic traffic flow, Journey time, Hybrid simulation, Adaptive traffic control, Adaptive systems, Adaptive control


A hybrid mesoscopic–microscopic model is implemented that applies microscopic simulation to areas of specific interest while simulating a large surrounding network in lesser detail with a mesoscopic model. The hybrid model integrates VisSim, a microscopic traffic simulation model, and Mezzo, a recently developed mesoscopic model. The hybrid model is applied on a network in which Mezzo simulates the entire area (6,000 links) of Stockholm, Sweden, and VisSim simulates the area of specific interest, containing three intersections with adaptive signal control with bus-priority functions. The adaptive signal control and bus-priority functions are simulated by a separate signal controller simulator (EC-1 simulator) that interacts with the hybrid Mezzo–VisSim model and thereby provides the actual signal changes that would take place in the field. Two alternative control schemes are evaluated with the hybrid setup: the original fixed-time control and the new adaptive control. The results show clear improvement in terms of travel times, delays, and stops with the new adaptive control scheme. They also show that although these improvements for the local (microlevel) area attract additional traffic from the surrounding (mesolevel) area, the net effects both locally and networkwide remain positive in terms of travel times, average number of stops, and delay. Moreover, this study demonstrates the advantages of hybrid simulation in evaluation of complicated adaptive traffic control in which both local detailed effects and network effects need to be studied.