Dr. Weihua Gu

UC Berkeley Center for Future Urban Transport

June 05, 2013, 11:00, Room GC B3 424 (click here for the map)

Improving Urban Transport: From the City Block to the City-Wide Scale

The global-wide trend toward urbanization, with its attendant traffic congestion and environmental degradation, calls for enhancements to public transit and other green modes of travel. In the near term, this means that greener modes must compete more effectively with, and coexist more harmoniously with, automobile traffic. The presentation explores ideas in this realm, beginning at the scale of a city block. I first focus on busy, multi-berth bus stops where multiple bus lines converge and on the bus queues that form when these stops have insufficient numbers of berths. Queueing models are developed to predict the bus-carrying capacities of these stops, and analytical solutions are derived by exploiting renewal processes that are embedded in the unique operating features of serial bus berths. The resulting models can be used to estimate a stopís number of berths needed to achieve a target capacity and to determine the conditions when bus maneuvers into or out of berths should be regulated. I then examine bus stops that reside near signalized intersections, where dwelling buses can impede cars from discharging into or out of the intersections. Using kinematic wave theory, analytical models are formulated, both to quantify negative impacts and design mitigation strategies. The presentation ends with brief discussion of ongoing work, e.g., to improve travel along corridors by dispatching buses in platoons; and to design greener city-wide transport networks by integrating bicycle-sharing systems with public transit.


Dr. Weihua Gu is the Deputy Director of the UC Berkeley Center for Future Urban Transport, who also served as a lecturer at the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, UC Berkeley. His research interests include public transit systems, multimodal urban transportation systems, freeway traffic operations, queueing models, and infrastructure management. He received his B.S. degree and M.Eng. degree in Civil Engineering from Tsinghua University (Beijing, China) in 2002 and 2005; and his Ph.D. degree in Transportation Engineering in 2012, the M.A. degree in Economics in 2011, and the M.Sc. degree in Industrial Engineering & Operations Research in 2010, all from UC Berkeley. His awards include a Gordon F. Newell Award for Excellence in Transportation Science (given by UC Berkeley Transportation Engineering Faculty), and a Chinese Government Award for Outstanding Self-Financing Students Abroad.