Supply facility and input/output point locations in the presence of barriers

Shoou Jiun Wang, Joyendu Bhadury, Rakesh Nagi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper studies a facility location model in which two-dimensional Euclidean space represents the layout of a shop floor. The demand is generated by fixed rectangular-shaped user sites and served by a single supply facility. It is assumed that (i) communication between the supply point and a demand facility occurs at an input/output (I/O) point on the demand facility itself, (ii) the facilities themselves pose barriers to travel and (iii) distance measurement is as per the L1 -metric. The objective is to determine optimal locations of the supply facility as well as I/O points on the demand facilities, in order to minimize total transportation costs. Several, increasingly more complex, versions of the model are formulated and polynomial time algorithms are developed to find the optimal locations in each case. In a facility layout setting, often a new central supply facility such as a parts supply center or tool crib needs to be located to serve the existing demand facilities (e.g., workstations or maintenance areas). The demand facilities are physical entities that occupy space, that cannot be traveled through, and that receive material from the central facility, through a perimeter I/O (input/output or drop-off/pick-up) point. This paper addresses the joint problem of locating the central facility and determining the I/O point on each demand facility to minimize the total material transportation cost. Different versions of this problem are considered. The solution methods draw from and extend results of location theory for a class of restricted location problems. For practitioners, simple results and polynomial time algorithms are developed for solving these facility (re) design problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)685-699
Number of pages15
JournalComputers and Operations Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - May 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Facility layout
  • Location with barriers
  • Minisum location
  • Optimal I/O point location
  • Rectilinear metric
  • Shortest path

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Management Science and Operations Research


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