Table of Contents
International Journal of Vehicular Technology
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 963427, 14 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/963427
Research Article

A Geo-Aware and VRP-Based Public Bicycle Redistribution System

1Department of Electrical Engineering, Nan Kai University of Technology, Nantou 54243, Taiwan
2Department of Information Engineering and Computer Science, Feng Chia University, Taichung 40724, Taiwan

Received 24 July 2012; Revised 2 November 2012; Accepted 24 November 2012

Academic Editor: Chyi-Ren Dow

Copyright © 2012 J. H. Lin and T. C. Chou. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Public Bicycle System (PBS) has been developed for short-distance transportation as a part of the mass transportation system. The supply and demand of bikes in PBS is usually unbalanced at different stations and needs to be continuously and widely monitored and redistributed. The bicycle redistribution is a part of the vehicle routing problem (VRP). We can apply solutions to the VRP to redistribute bicycle efficiently. However, most solutions to the VRP use the Euclidean distance as the condition factor, which does not take road conditions, traffic regulations, and geographical factors into account, resulting in unnecessary waste of delivery time and human resources. In this work, we propose an actual path distance optimization method for the VRP to adapt the several additional constraints of road problems. We also implement a system that integrates real-time station information, Web GIS, the urban road network, and heuristics algorithms for PBS. The system includes a simulator inside that can assist PBS managers to do the route planning efficiently and find the best scheduling strategy to achieve hotspot analysis and the adjustment of station deployment strategies to reduce PBS operation cost.