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Decision Analysis and Risk Models for Land Development Affecting Infrastructure Systems

Authors

  • Shital A. Thekdi,

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    • Center for Risk Management of Engineering Systems and Department of Systems and Information Engineering, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA.

  • James H. Lambert

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    • Center for Risk Management of Engineering Systems and Department of Systems and Information Engineering, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA.


Address correspondence to James H. Lambert, 112 Olsson Hall, 151 Engineers Way, PO Box 400736, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22904, USA; tel: 434-9822072 or 434-5314529; lambert@virginia.edu.

Abstract

Coordination and layering of models to identify risks in complex systems such as large-scale infrastructure of energy, water, and transportation is of current interest across application domains. Such infrastructures are increasingly vulnerable to adjacent commercial and residential land development. Land development can compromise the performance of essential infrastructure systems and increase the costs of maintaining or increasing performance. A risk-informed approach to this topic would be useful to avoid surprise, regret, and the need for costly remedies. This article develops a layering and coordination of models for risk management of land development affecting infrastructure systems. The layers are: system identification, expert elicitation, predictive modeling, comparison of investment alternatives, and implications of current decisions for future options. The modeling layers share a focus on observable factors that most contribute to volatility of land development and land use. The relevant data and expert evidence include current and forecasted growth in population and employment, conservation and preservation rules, land topography and geometries, real estate assessments, market and economic conditions, and other factors. The approach integrates to a decision framework of strategic considerations based on assessing risk, cost, and opportunity in order to prioritize needs and potential remedies that mitigate impacts of land development to the infrastructure systems. The approach is demonstrated for a 5,700-mile multimodal transportation system adjacent to 60,000 tracts of potential land development.

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