Development of a composite sustainability index for roadway intersection design alternatives in the UAE

Maryam J. Al-Kaabi, Munjed A. Maraqa, Yasser S. Hawas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Many studies have been carried out to evaluate the sustainability of transportation systems, but little attention has been given for the design of roadway intersections. This study aimed to establish a framework and develop a tool to assess the sustainability of roadway intersections from a road-user perspective. Sustainability indicators at the strategic level were extracted from the literature and were utilized with relative weights to develop economic, environmental, and social indices that would be combined into a composite sustainability index (CSI) tool. The tool was applied to four case studies of intersections in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. For each case study, the sustainability of fifteen design alternatives was evaluated for different scenarios of traffic volume and operational speed. Dimensional indices and the overall CSI were determined using the Multi-Criteria Decision Making method. Results indicated that traffic volume had a significant impact on intersection sustainability ranking, while the effect of operational speed was insignificant. Moreover, weight assignment had an effect on determining the most sustainable design alternative, where the best alternatives of the dimension with the major weight would most likely be the most sustainable. The developed tool would assist decision-makers in other cities to assess intersection projects that correspond to their regional goals.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8696
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2 2020


  • Multi-Criteria Decision Making method
  • Road intersections design
  • Sustainable transport planning
  • United Arab Emirates

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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