Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

infrastructure - vehicle, infrastructure - bus/tram priority, infrastructure - bus/tram lane, land use - planning, ridership - forecasting, ridership - forecasting, organisation - management, mode - bike, mode - carpool


Transportation policy, Trade off analysis, Strategies, Strategic planning, Scenarios, Projections, Priority lanes, Priorities, Objectives, Management, Life cycle planning, Life cycle analysis, HOV lanes, High occupancy vehicle lanes, Graphics, Goals, Forecasting, Evolution (Change), Diamond lanes, Comparison studies, Carpool lanes, Alternatives analysis


High-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes usually go through an evolution of stages in their life cycle. The typical evolution includes changes in demand levels from several modes including 2+ or 3+ carpools and vanpools, transit, and general-purpose vehicles. To ensure adequate usage, most facilities have started out with a designation of HOV2+. In some cases, over time, HOV2 volumes have exceeded the capacity of the facility, which has caused delays for transit vehicles. Therefore, there is an inevitable need for managing the hierarchy of facility users over time. A graphical tool is presented that indicates the life span of a managed HOV lane, and it can be applied to a variety of existing and planned managed HOV lane projects. The graphic was used in Colorado, Florida, and Texas in communicating the managed lane concept to transportation professionals. Further, the graphic was used to explain the historical operation of a managed HOV lane facility and the likely progression if current management policies remain in effect, based on experiences in similar facilities. Alternative management strategies can also be evaluated and compared with the graphical tool. The graphical representation of this managed HOV lane concept is anticipated to be valuable for transportation professionals in many areas (e.g., highway, tolling, and transit) in presenting and understanding operating scenarios for managed lanes over time and how they meet the goals of the facility. Applications of the life-cycle graphic to various facilities in the United States are also presented.