The “Balanced Transportation Analyzer (BTA)” is a PC- or Mac-capable integrated spreadsheet model to assess traffic improvements, revenue gains and other benefits of time-variable congestion pricing and other transportation measures (e.g., transit investments, changes in transit fares, highway lane expansions or closures) for a city or region. Although developed for and geared to New York City, where it has been used to analyze not just congestion pricing but also transit fare hikes, transit service cutbacks, changes in taxi service, and street closures, the BTA may be adapted to assess the impacts of similar measures in other urban areas.
Development of the BTA began in 2007. It now (August 2012) has 59 interlocking worksheet “tabs” that are stocked with baseline travel data and are connected by hundreds of equations and algorithms. These 59 tabs “communicate” with each other when user inputs are entered that correspond to congestion tolls and/or other policy changes. Data inputs are done in a single tab, enabling them to be handled within minutes or even seconds, and the calculation of results requires less than a second. Results include: gross and net revenues from congestion pricing; changes in average travel speeds (separated among different times of day and between weekdays and weekends); changes in vehicle volumes (similarly separated); and monetization of all benefits such as travel-time savings, fewer traffic crashes, reduced air emissions, and lesser contribution of transportation to climate change, as well as costs such as the “amenity” that will be lost when drivers opt out of some car trips due to the tolls.
The BTA is available on the Internet via this link: http://www.nnyn.org/kheelplan/BTA_1.1.xls.