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Transportation Demand Model

The Wichita Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (WAMPO) is in the process of updating the Travel Demand Model (TDM). The model update will help WAMPO make better decisions for the Wichita area transportation system, which includes roads, sidewalks, bike paths, and public transportation. This webpage is intended to explain how the model works and how it is used by WAMPO to help make the best transportation project selections.
JEO Consulting Group and Caliper Corporation were hired to work with the WAMPO project team to update the TDM. The update project kicked off in October 2022 and will conclude in Spring 2024.

Travel Demand Modeling Proces

The WAMPO TDM includes a four-step process that helps determine transportation system needs for the future. Travel forecasting models are used to predict changes in travel and the ways people will choose to travel. For example, will people in the future prefer to travel by car, on foot or bicycle, or use public transportation? These changes are predicted based on changes in land development, demographics, and the supply of modes of transportation in a region.
A classic 4-step model is made up of:

This forecasting model will help us make better decisions because, without it, it is difficult to estimate what transportation infrastructure and services would experience congestion and needed improvements. It would also be hard to assume what magnitude of traffic is needed for bridge design improvements, when to make safety improvements, and what amount of increase in users should be considered. This also studies the travel time patterns in our region that the commuters experience to jobs, schools, medical care and amenities.
- Chad Parasa, WAMPO Executive Director

Overview & Purpose

The model aims to collect information on current traffic conditions and estimate future traffic conditions based on future land development, population growth, and changes, and economic growth.

The purpose of the model is to provide a picture of the future travel in our region and the demand it places on the road, sidewalks, and bike path networks. The model also helps decision-makers understand how well future or proposed transportation projects will serve the needs of the region. Travel demand modeling helps answer questions like:

Which streets will become congested in the future?

What transportation projects will best improve the region’s modes of future travel?

How many people can we expect to use the transportation system in the future, and how will they use it?

Travel Demand Model Integration into long-range planning

The WAMPO model will be used to provide information on the results of proposed transportation projects. For example, if a road is found to be congested, meaning more cars are on the road than the road can support, the model can show how much that congestion will be reduced by widening the roadway or providing alternatives, such as highway, transit, or bike/ped improvements. The outcomes of these project types can be modeled, showing how much each will reduce congestion. This information is used to help decision-makers with the process of choosing and prioritizing future projects.

A travel demand model is a tool; like any other tool, it can only be used for certain purposes and not others. Understanding what the model can and cannot do is important for understanding how it will be integrated into WAMPO’s long-range transportation plan; the Metropolitan Transportation Plan (MTP).

What the model can do:

  • Show the impact of road widening and road additions

  • Analyze the impacts of transportation plans on the regional transportation system

  • Show the impact of new interchanges on traffic patterns

  • Show the impact of large developments

  • Forecast corridor volumes

  • Test alternative land use plans, and/or

  • Provide input for air quality conformity

What the model can’t do:

  • Traffic micro-simulation for specific sections of roadway or a specific intersection

  • Model small or local roads very accurately

  • Model bottlenecks

  • Show the land use impact of a new road, and/or

  • Show the impacts of small developments

For more information on the WAMPO TDM and the update to the model, please reach out to WAMPO staff: Ashley Bryers or Emily Thon at or (316)779-1313.

Interested in receiving updates on the TDM update project? Sign up for our RSS newsfeed here.

 [SH1]Can you create a dedicated mailbox/number for TDM update calls? If not, we will insert the main # here.

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