Statistical methods to estimate vehicle count using traffic cameras

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Traffic camera has played an important role in enabling intelligent and real-time traffic monitoring and control. In this paper, we focus on establishing a correlation model for the traffic cameras' vehicle counts and increase the spatial-resolution of a city's vehicle counting traffic camera system by means of correlation-based estimation. We have developed two methods for constructing traffic models, one using statistical machine learning based on Gaussian models and the other using analytical derivation from the origin-destination (OD) matrix. The Gaussian-based method outperforms existing correlation coefficient based methods. When training data are not available, our analytical method based on OD matrix can still perform well. When there is only a limited number of cameras, we develop heuristic algorithms to determine the most desirable locations to place the cameras so that the errors of traffic estimations at the locations without traffic cameras are minimized. We show some improvements in the performance of our proposed methods over an existing method in a variety of simulations.

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