|Start Page Number:||525|
|End Page Number:||543|
|Publication Date:||Sep 2017|
|Journal:||Central European Journal of Operations Research|
|Keywords:||combinatorial optimization, vehicle routing & scheduling, location, production, supply & supply chains, simulation, heuristics, demand|
In this paper we study a problem that arose while planning the delivery of perishable goods, such as newspapers or foodstuff, in urban areas. The customers require the delivery of several different products within specified time windows. Given a production schedule, facilities for cross docking and a vehicle fleet, the problem is to create a cost effective delivery plan. We propose a heuristic that maintains product availability, and simultaneously, generates an efficient routing schedule. Product availability is maintained through a preflow‐push algorithm performed on a time‐space facility network, while the routing is guided by simulated annealing. The heuristic was tested on a set of specifically created test instances and on standard 2E‐LRP instances by Prodhon.