2+1-roads Recent Swedish Capacity and Level-of-Service Experience

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Torsten Bergh
Mats Remgård
Arne Carlsson
Per Strömgren

The first Swedish 2+1 median barrier road was opened in 1998. The concept was to retrofit the standard existing two-lane 13 m paved width cross-section at 90 and 110 kph posted speed limit without widening. This design has one continuous lane in each direction, a middle lane changing direction every one to three kilometres with a median barrier separating the two traffic directions. Today over 2 700 km 2+1 median barrier roads are opened for traffic. AADT’s vary from some 3 000 to 20 000 with an average just below 10 000 nowadays normally with 100 kph.

The concept has lately been enhanced also to cover the existing 9 m paved width cross-section. The design concept is the same from a driver’s viewpoint, one continuous lane in each direction with a middle lane changing direction and a separating median barrier. This is created by introducing a continuous median barrier and adding overtaking lanes within an overtaking strategy. The differences are the existence of 1+1-sections, less overtaking opportunities and a slightly more narrow cross-section. Some 15 projects are opened. The purpose of this paper is to summarize present knowledge on level-of-service issues as they are presented in Swedish design and assessment guidelines and to give an overview of field measurements and theoretical analytical and simulation studies supporting the recommendations.

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