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Appendix A First International Symposium on Freeway and Tollway Operations

The scan team began its trip in Greece with participation in the First International Symposium on Freeway and Tollway Operations in Athens. This symposium was jointly sponsored by a host of European and U.S. associations, including the Transportation Research Board (TRB) and the International Bridge, Tunnel, and Turnpike Association (IBTTA). The objectives of the symposium were to capture the state of the practice in freeway and tollway operations, identify innovative strategies and techniques to improve the proactive management and control of traffic, and explore the potential benefits of using managed lanes, tolling, pricing, and other strategies to improve traffic operations on congested freeways.

The symposium was successful with more than 400 participants attending the 4-day event. More than 200 presenters from 18 countries gave technical presentations that centered around four major tracks:

The following sections summarize the distinguished sessions and four major tracks held during the symposium.

Opening of Distinguished Sessions

The distinguished sessions that opened the symposium were divided into U.S., European Union, and IBTTA perspectives. The U.S. session, "Improving Mobility and Managing Congestion," provided insight into the American approach to managing congestion. Presenters provided highlights on the future direction of congestion management in the United States and specific regional perspectives from California, Texas, and Virginia. The IBTTA session, "Improving Policies, Practice, and People," outlined the worldwide mission of IBTTA, regional perspectives from Florida and Texas, Spain's foray into toll road interoperability, and the criticality of using tolling to help ensure the success and advancement of transportation across the globe. "Priorities in Europe," presenting the perspective of the Association Européenne des Concessionaires d'Autoroutes et d'Ouvrages à Péage (ASECAP) and the European Union, presented European toll-related priorities in France, Belgium, France, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

Expressway Management and Congestion Solutions

This track provided cutting-edge information on the various methods used to manage freeways to solve congestion problems. Specific sessions highlighted successful practices in the following areas of operations:

Presentations focused on projects and programs from across the globe, including Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Switzerland, and the United States.

Tollway Development, Tolling Operations, Technologies, and Issues

This track focused on recent developments and trends in tolling and tollway operations, technologies that enhance their success, and issues that challenge operators and users of these facilities. Speakers from Austria, Chile, France, Greece, Israel, the United Kingdom, and the United States spoke on numerous topics related to the following:

Technologies and Issues for Operations and Control Centers

The third track in the symposium centered on advancements in technology and their use with tollway operations and control centers for freeways. Topics of discussion addressed during the track's sessions included the following:

Presenters highlighted advancements in the application of technologies in freeway operations and tolling in such countries as Canada, China, France, Germany, Greece, Israel, Montenegro, Portugal, Serbia, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Managed Lanes/Expressway and Tollway Development and Issues

The final symposium track was split between addressing issues related to managed lanes and the development issues surrounding expressways and tollways. Sessions on managed lanes provided recent research results and practical experience—mostly from the United States—related to the following:

Sessions devoted to expressway and tollway development highlighted critical issues and experiences in Canada, France, Greece, Spain, and the United States in the following areas:

Roundtable Panels

In addition to the technical tracks discussed above, the symposium featured a number of roundtable panel discussions to bring focused attention to critical issues related to freeway and tollway operations. These panel sessions, which followed the same topical areas as the tracks, were the following:

In each panel discussion, experts provided critical insight into the topic and presented potential solutions to challenges agencies face in these areas.

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