OR Spectrum

, Volume 33, Issue 4, pp 989–1007 | Cite as

A variable neighborhood search heuristic for the design of multicommodity production–distribution networks with alternative facility configurations

  • Houssam Amrani
  • Alain Martel
  • Nicolas Zufferey
  • Polina Makeeva
Regular Article


This paper proposes efficient heuristics to solve large-scale production–distribution network design models. The problem studied is an extension of the two-echelon multicommodity CFLPSS (capacitated facility location problem with single sourcing) considering direct shipments from manufacturing facilities, alternative facility configurations, and concave inventory holding costs. After reviewing the relevant literature, a detailed description of the production–distribution network design problem studied is provided, and the problem is formulated as a mixed-integer program. The heuristic solution approach proposed is then presented. It is a variable neighborhood search (VNS) method integrating a tabu procedure. Experiments are designed to calibrate the heuristics developed, and to compare their performance with the CPLEX solver, for problems with different realistic characteristics. Computational results are presented and discussed.


Production–distribution networks Location–allocation problem Facilities configuration Tabu search Variable neighborhood search 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Houssam Amrani
    • 1
  • Alain Martel
    • 1
  • Nicolas Zufferey
    • 2
  • Polina Makeeva
    • 3
  1. 1.CIRRELT and Faculté des sciences de l’administrationUniversité LavalSte-FoyCanada
  2. 2.HEC, Faculty of Economics and Social SciencesUniversity of GenevaGeneva 4Switzerland
  3. 3.School of Computer and Communication SciencesSwiss Federal Institute of TechnologyLausanneSwitzerland

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