AbstractBalancing schedule, cost, mobility, and livability when planning urban highway projects built under accelerated contract provisions is a daunting task. Despite the wealth of research analyzing the effects of highway construction alternatives, holistic studies systemically integrating the scheduling, cost, and traffic risk-related aspects of accelerated highway projects to determine the most economical plans and contract times are rare. To fill this gap, this study developed a novel seven-step approach to choosing the most cost-effective construction alternatives and contract times through balanced tradeoffs that reduce disruption to the traveling public while minimizing construction time and road user cost. This study blends existing schedule and mobility impact assessment techniques with a risk analysis under accelerated construction conditions for the integration of schedule, cost, traffic, and risk into the determination of the most economical construction contract times. A best use case based on an actual project was also developed according to these seven steps, validating the practicality of the proposed systematic approach. This study will help state transportation agencies by providing a systematic integrative approach to decision-making, thus allowing for well-informed and optimally efficient choices among all available options.

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