Using 3D/4D CAD modeling for traffic management : development, review, and communication
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Developing a traffic management plan for a transportation infrastructure project is a complex activity which requires input from many different fields. Ideally, design, construction and traffic engineers all work towards devising an integrated traffic management plan that would consider a variety of aspects. Current literature about traffic management modeling mostly focuses either on high-level tools not adequate to perform required phasing and constructability analysis of construction activities, or study pre- and post-construction conditions. On the other hand, computer aided design (CAD) modeling of infrastructure projects mentions potential benefits for traffic management plan reviewing. However, it does not delve into using 3 dimensional (3D) and 4 dimensional (3D and time) CAD to study (1) the impact of construction activities on traffic, (2) during construction, (3) at a level that allows detailed phasing and constructability reviews for traffic management plan elaboration and communication. Using 3D and 4D CAD modeling can alleviate the complexity of devising traffic management plans for transportation projects by providing an integrated framework from which developers can elaborate, review and communicate their strategies. The many visualization benefits of 3D/4D modeling used in conjunction with their advanced analysis capabilities can tremendously aid compared to more traditional 2D methods. The three transportation projects described in this study aim at illustrating the benefits and added value these models provide to more efficiently and rapidly visualize and analyze intended traffic management strategies, at different stages of the construction process.