Dual-mode vehicle routing in mixed autonomous and non-autonomous zone networks

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Autonomous vehicles (AVs) are expected to widely re-define mobility in the future, transforming many solutions into autonomous services. Nonetheless, this development requires an expected transition phase of several decades in which some regions will provide sufficient infrastructure for AV movements, while others will not support AVs yet. In this work, we propose an operational planning model for mobility services operating in regions with AV-ready and not AV-ready zones. To this end, we model detailed automated driving areas and consider a heterogeneous fleet comprised of three vehicle types: autonomous, conventional, and dual-mode. While autonomous and conventional vehicles can only operate in their designated areas, dual-mode vehicles service zone-crossing demands in which both human and autonomous driving are required. For such a hybrid network, we introduce a new mathematical planning model based on a site-dependent variant of the heterogeneous dial-a-ride problem (HDARP). With a numerical study for the city of Delft, The Netherlands, we provide insights into how operational costs, service levels, and fleet utilization develop under 405 scenarios of multiple infrastructural settings and technology costs.