We present a new general variable neighborhood search approach for the uncapacitated single allocation p-hub median problem in networks. This NP-hard problem is concerned with locating hub facilities in order to minimize the traffic between all origin-destination pairs. We use three neighborhoods and efficiently update data structures for calculating new total flow in the network. In addition to the usual sequential strategy, a new nested strategy is proposed in designing a deterministic variable neighborhood descent local search. Our experimentation shows that general variable neighborhood search based heuristics outperform the best-known heuristics in terms of solution quality and computational effort. Moreover, we improve the best-known objective values for some large Australia Post and PlanetLab instances. Results with the new nested variable neighborhood descent show the best performance in solving very large test instances.
Published December 2009 , 24 pages