Date of Award

Winter 2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Civil Engineering

First Advisor

Amr Kandil

Committee Chair

Amr Kandil

Committee Member 1

Makarand Hastak

Committee Member 2

Satish Ukkusuri

Committee Member 3

William Crossley


Public funds allocated to the improvement and maintenance of highway infrastructure have reached the limits due to a rapid rate of socioeconomic growth and deterioration in infrastructure system performance. A public-private partnership (PPP) concessions a contractual and project financing mechanism that helps public authorities lessen the impact of their limited financial resources. In this project financing scheme, a public authority enters into a partnership with a private concessionaire for the purpose of developing a specific infrastructure facility. In return, the concessionaire receives the right to operate for a specified period of time. This creates strong potential for the delivery of more infrastructure facilities than those that could be afforded through public funds alone. However, the complexity of a PPP concession formulation and the challenges faced in concession design remain critical and prevent successful implementation of this innovative project financing scheme. The complexity of a concession formulation typically stems from the interactions between concession participants in the design of the concession terms. Moreover, the fact that these concession participants are exposed to several categories of risks at different levels and have distinct expectation of rewards in each of the project lifecycle phases makes it rather difficult to reach a mutually beneficial concession design. This necessitates a thorough study of the complexity of concession formulation and PPP concession design. This research aims to create a comprehensive concession analysis framework for infrastructure project financing through public-private partnership schemes. The research methodology is proposed to have three main tasks. First, an Agent-Based Modeling (ABM) framework for traffic simulation is created to provide traffic estimates that account for road user behavior in mitigating the traffic demand risk from a lifecycle perspective. The application of the ABM framework facilitates the transportation project evaluation in terms of traffic volume and revenue analysis by providing an efficient aggregate level of traffic simulation while capturing road users' route choice behaviors. Second, complexity originating from the concession formulation and implementation will be addressed in a system dynamics model for evaluating PPP concession viability. This proposed model will aim to quantify the concession cash flows associated with PPP highway project finance, construction, operation, maintenance, and preservation. The system dynamics model takes into account policy resistance that originates from conflicting concession participant's objectives and the causal relationships between the concession design parameters. Finally, a multi-objective optimization model will be developed to maximize concession performance indicators adopted by each concession participant. The system dynamics models will be utilized in evaluating the PPP concession performances. Using the system dynamics model, the concession terms including toll rates, traffic capacity, construction design, maintenance plan, and project capital structure can be evaluated with the consideration of the policy resistance and PPP concession complexity factors. The multi-objective optimization model will then process the performance indicators in searching for an optimal set of PPP concession design which ensures project lifecycle viability and the satisfaction of multiple stakeholder objectives and requirements. ^ The proposed framework creates a number of advancements to the state of the art and will make a number of contributions to the body of knowledge. ^ This research is expected to create a versatile platform that allows the integration of infrastructure asset management approaches, agent-based modeling simulations, multi-objective optimization techniques, and project financial viability evaluation methods into an innovative public-private partnership concession analysis framework. The application of this research framework in infrastructure development practice will enhance the design of balanced public-private partnership policies for the development of large-scale highway infrastructure systems.