Correction of the O-D matrix from traffic counts is a classical procedure usually adopted in transport engineering by practitioners for improving the overall reliability of transport models. Recently, Papola and Marzano [Papola, A., Marzano, V., 2006. How can we trust in the O-D matrix correction procedure using traffic counts? In: Proceedings of the 2006 ETC Conference, Strasbourg] showed through laboratory experiments that this procedure is generally unable to provide for effective correction of the O-D matrix. From a theoretical standpoint, this result can be justified by the lower number of (stochastic) equations (independent observed link flows) with respect to the unknowns (O-D flows). This paper first confirms that this represents the main reason for the failure of this procedure, showing that satisfactory correction is generally obtained when the number of equations is greater than the number of unknowns. Then, since this circumstance does not occur in practice, where the number of O-D pairs usually far exceeds the number of link counts, we explore alternative assumptions and contexts, allowing for a proper balance between unknowns and equations. This can be achieved by moving to within-day dynamic contexts, where a much larger number of equations are generally available. In order to bound the corresponding increase in the number of unknowns, specific reasonable hypotheses on O-D flow variation across time slices must be introduced. In this respect, we analyze the effectiveness of the O-D matrix correction procedure in the usually adopted linear hypothesis on the dynamic process evolution of O-D flows and under the assumption of constant distribution shares. In the second case it is shown that satisfactory corrections can be performed using a small number of time slices of up to 3 min in length, leading to a time horizon in which the hypothesis of constant distribution shares can be regarded as trustworthy and realistic
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