Journal of Heuristics

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 43–58 | Cite as

Using Constraint-Based Operators to Solve the Vehicle Routing Problem with Time Windows

  • Louis-Martin Rousseau
  • Michel Gendreau
  • Gilles Pesant


This paper presents operators searching large neighborhoods in order to solve the vehicle routing problem. They make use of the pruning and propagation techniques of constraint programming which allow an efficient search of such neighborhoods. The advantages of using a large neighborhood are not only the increased probability of finding a better solution at each iteration but also the reduction of the need to invoke specially-designed methods to avoid local minima. These operators are combined in a variable neighborhood descent in order to take advantage of the different neighborhood structures they generate.

constraint programming local search method metaheuristic hybrid method vehicle routing problem variable neighborhood descent combinatorial optimization 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Louis-Martin Rousseau
    • 1
    • 2
  • Michel Gendreau
    • 1
    • 2
  • Gilles Pesant
    • 3
    • 2
  1. 1.Département informatique et recherche opérationnelleUniversity of MontrealMontréalCanada
  2. 2.Centre for Research on TransportationUniversity of MontrealMontréalCanada
  3. 3.Département de génie électrique et de génie informatiqueÉcole Polytechnique de MontréalMontréalCanada

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