Open-source VRPLite Package for Vehicle Routing with Pickup and Delivery: A Path Finding Engine for Scheduled Transportation Systems

Xuesong Zhou, Lu Tong, Monirehalsadat Mahmoudi, Lijuan Zhuge, Yu Yao, Yongxiang Zhang, Pan Shang, Jiangtao Liu, Tie Shi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Recently, automation, shared use, and electrification are viewed as the “three revolutions” in the future transportation sector, and the traditional scheduled public transit system will be greatly enhanced with flexible services and autonomous vehicle scheduling capabilities. Many emerging scheduled transportation applications include the fully automatic operation system in urban rail transit, joint line planning, and timetabling for high-speed rail as well as emerging self-driving vehicle dispatching. The vehicle routing problem (VRP) holds promise for seeking an optimal set of vehicle routes and schedules to meet customers’ requirements and plays a vital role in optimizing services for feature scheduled transportation systems. Due to the difficulty of finding optimal solutions for large-scale instances, enormous research efforts have been dedicated to developing efficient algorithms, while our paper presents a unique perspective based on a time-dependent and state-dependent path searching framework. An open-source and light-weight VRP with pickup and delivery with time windows (VRPPDTW) modeling package, namely VRPLite, has been developed in this research to provide a high-quality and computationally efficient solution engine for transportation on demand applications. This paper describes the space–time–state modeling process of VRPPDTW using a hyper-network representation. This solution framework can be embedded in a column generation or Lagrangian relaxation framework to handle many general applications. A number of illustrated examples are presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of the path search algorithm under various traffic conditions and passenger travel requirements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-85
Number of pages18
JournalUrban Rail Transit
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2018


  • Column generation
  • Lagrangian relaxation
  • Space–time–state network modeling
  • Vehicle routing problem with pickup and delivery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Transportation
  • Urban Studies
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Open-source VRPLite Package for Vehicle Routing with Pickup and Delivery: A Path Finding Engine for Scheduled Transportation Systems'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this