Modeling and solving a logging camp location problem
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Harvesting plans for Canadian logging companies tend to cover wider territories than before. Long transportation distances for the workers involved in logging activities have thus become a significant issue. Often, cities or villages to accommodate the workers are far away. A common practice is thus to construct camps close to the logging regions, containing the complete infrastructure to host the workers. The problem studied in this paper consists in finding the optimal number, location and size of logging camps. We investigate the relevance and advantages of constructing additional camps, as well as expanding and relocating existing ones, since the harvest areas change over time. We model this problem as an extension of the Capacitated Facility Location Problem. Economies of scale are included on several levels of the cost structure. We also consider temporary closing of facility parts and particular capacity constraints that involve integer rounding on the left hand side. Results for real-world data and for a large set of randomly generated instances are presented.
KeywordsLogging camps Capacitated facility location problem Mixed integer programming
We would like to thank Mathieu Blouin and Jean Favreau from FPInnovations for their valuable support throughout this study and for providing the data used in the experiments. The authors are also grateful to MITACS, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and FPInnovations for their financial support.
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