Northwestern Events Calendar


NUTC Seminar: "Research, Planning, & Lessons Learned in Evacuation & Transportation Resilience" - Brian Wolshon, Louisiana State University


When: Thursday, February 1, 2018
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM Central

Where: Chambers Hall, Lower Level, 600 Foster St, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Cost: No registration required

Contact: Joan Pinnell   847.491.7287

Group: Northwestern University Transportation Center

Category: Academic


Northwestern University Transportation Center presents:

"Research, Planning, & Lessons Learned in Evacuation & Transportation Resilience"

Brian Wolshon, Ph.D., P.E., PTOE
Edward A. and Karen Wax Schmitt Distinguished Professor
Director, Gulf Coast Research Center for Evacuation and Transportation Resiliency
Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge, Louisiana



The 2017 mass evacuation of Florida associated with Hurricane Irma, like those of the New Orleans and Houston for Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, was among the largest in U.S. history. Though not routine transportation events, evacuations are more common than commonly realized. Similarly, the methods used to plan and manage evacuations are similar to, and can be used for, more routinely occurring events.

The presentation will include an overview and history of the general concepts and practices used for evacuation in the United States, including how evacuation is also a key component of transportation resilience. Included in this will be the history and development of the Louisiana evacuation plan, particularly how research conducted at LSU was able to support and improve the development the New Orleans freeway contraflow plan. It will also highlight a recent U.S. DOT supported project to apply state-of-the-art traffic simulation modeling for future evacuation plan assessment and improvement. As part of this work, a regional multimodal model for the southeast Louisiana highway network was developed to replicate the temporal and spatial travel movements of metropolitan New Orleans prior to Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The goal of this information is to highlight the state of evacuation planning practice in America, lessons learned from Katrina and Gustav, and what professionals from other regions of the world can learn from practices in Louisiana and the United States.



This presentation will feature Brian Wolshon, Ph.D. P.E., PTOE, the Edward A. and Karen Wax Schmitt Distinguished Professor of Civil Engineering at Louisiana State University and the founding Director of the US DOT sponsored Gulf Coast Research Center for Evacuation and Transportation Resiliency. Dr. Wolshon is an internationally recognized expert on evacuation, emergency, and resilience traffic planning and management. In 2001, Dr. Wolshon founded and has since chaired Transportation Research Board of the National Academies Committee on Emergency Evacuation and is one of the founding organizers of the National Evacuation Conference, held biennially in New Orleans. He has authored dozens federal reports and book chapters as well as more than 60 scientific journal papers on topics related to evacuation planning and engineering. He has also served as an expert consultant to dozens of federal, state, and local government agencies; national laboratories; and engineering firms throughout the United States and abroad. He also been interviewed by more the 100 media outlets including The New York Times, the Science and Discovery Channels, CNN, CNBC, MSNBC, Fox News, NPR, USA Today, Time Magazine, the Times of London among many others and has served as a commentator on several television programs.

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