Skip to content U.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway AdministrationU.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway Administration

Office of Planning, Environment, & Realty (HEP)
Planning · Environment · Real Estate

HEP Events Guidance Publications Glossary Awards Contacts

Modeling and Analysis Needs and Resources for Small Metropolitan Area Transportation Planning: Report on a Peer Exchange

Appendix B: Modeling Resources for Small MPOs

Participants in the meeting shared some of the resources that they found to be helpful. They are listed below.
Travel Model Improvement Program (TMIP)
TMIP has links to many resources, including documents, webinar summaries, and the popular TMIP email list for networking with peers.
www.fhwa.dot.gov/planning/tmip/

Travel Forecasting Resource
TRB and FHWA are developing the Travel Forecasting Resource as a comprehensive knowledge base for travel forecasting.
http://www.tfresource.org/ (Accessed 6/22/2012)

NCHRP 365 -- Travel Estimation Techniques for Urban Planning
In 1998, drawing upon several data sources including the 1990 Census and National Personal Household Travel (now called the NHTS) the Transportation Research Board under the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) released NCHRP Report 365. This report provides default values for many of the model inputs and evaluation measures used to support transportation travel demand forecasting.
http://ntl.bts.gov/lib/21000/21500/21563/PB99126724.pdf (Accessed 6/22/2012)

NCHRP 716 -- Travel Demand Forecasting: Parameters and Techniques
NCHRP 716 is a supplemental update to NCHRP 365 that addresses certain new modeling techniques and offers updated default parameters based on more recent research and survey data.
http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/nchrp/nchrp_rpt_716.pdf (Accessed 6/22/2012)

Travel Model Validation and Reasonableness Checking Manual
Discussion of methods and data for checking the performance of a travel demand model.
www.fhwa.dot.gov/planning/tmip/publications/other_reports/validation_and_reasonableness_2010/

National Household Travel Survey (NHTS)
The NHTS is the authoritative source of national data on the travel behavior of the American public. The data set allows analysis of daily travel by all modes, including characteristics of the people traveling, their household, and their vehicles.
http://nhts.ornl.gov/ (Accessed 6/22/2012)

Census Transportation Planning Products (CTPP) - Data Products
Since 1970 the transportation community has been paying for a special set of tables from the decennial censuses that are designed for transportation planning purposes. For a description of the CTPP, see http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/planning/census_issues/ctpp/. (Accessed 6/22/2012)
To begin to work your way through the CTPP products go to
http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/planning/census_issues/ctpp/data_products/index.cfm. (Accessed 6/22/2012)
For another look at the available CTPP data products also see
http://trbcensus.com/products/. (Accessed 6/22/2012)

Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS)
IPUMS is a microdata set of individual person records drawing data from more than 150 years of Censuses as well as the new American Community Survey. Most population data-especially historical census data-are typically available only in aggregated tabular form. The IPUMS is microdata, which means that it provides information about individual persons and households. This makes it possible for researchers to create tabulations tailored to their particular questions.
http://usa.ipums.org/usa/ (Accessed 6/22/2012)

Employment Securities Data (ES202) now Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW)
The QCEW (formerly ES202) is a Bureau of Labor Statistics program that publishes a quarterly count of employment and wages reported by employers covering 98 percent of U.S. jobs, available at the county, MSA, State, and national levels by industry.
http://www.bls.gov/cew/ (Accessed 6/22/2012)

On the Map - Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics (LEHD)
The LEHD is a program within the U.S. Census Bureau that links employment records with Census demographic data to produce synthetic Origin-Destination flow data at the Census Block level.1
http://lehd.did.census.gov/ (Accessed 3/26/2013)

List of Private and Federal Employment Data Sources (Circa 2007)
In 2007 the TRB Travel Data Users Forum focused on employment data and this annotated list of private and Federal employment data sources was put together.
http://edthefed.com/data/Employment_Data_Sources.pdf (Accessed 6/22/2012)

County-to-County worker flows from 1970, 1980, 1990, and 2000
http://www.bea.gov/itable/ (Accessed 6/22/2012)

Metropolitan Travel Survey Archive
The Archive was developed by the University of Minnesota as a place to store, preserve, and make publicly available- via the internet-travel surveys conducted by metropolitan areas, States, and localities. It contains the data, documentation, and results for a variety of regions throughout the country.
http://www.surveyarchive.org/index.html (Accessed 6/22/2012)

Supplemental Trip Generation Report
Though old (1985), this document provides some useful supplementary information related to trip generation compared to the standard ITE Trip Generation Report (now in its 8th Edition).
http://ntl.bts.gov/DOCS/382DNA.html (Accessed 6/22/2012)

Guide to Urban Traffic Volume Counting
Guide to Urban Traffic Volume Counting2was cited in FHWA's Model Validation and Reasonableness Checking report but is not on the web. The graph from this report on estimating sampling error in traffic counts appears below:

Graph of Default Coefficient of Variations for Daily Volume Across Days: The coefficient of variation graphs likely error in traffic counts at different traffic volume levels. The chart shows that the coefficient declines from a value of 0.25 when the traffic volume is 1,000 vehicles per day to a value of 0.05 when traffic volume is 200,000 vehicles per day. There is less variation when the overall traffic volume is higher.
FHWA staff contacts for Travel Modeling and Transportation Data are listed below. Email addresses are all firstname.lastname@dot.gov:

Systems Planning and Analysis Team
Brian Gardner (Team Leader)
Elaine Murakami (Data Resources)
Sarah Sun (TMIP Program Manager)
Jeremy Raw (Modeling and Analysis)
Supin Yoder (Modeling and Analysis)

FHWA Resource Center
Ed Christopher (Data Resources and Modeling)
Eric Pihl (Travel Demand Modeling)


1 FHWA maintains a web page with resources on application of LEHD data for transportation planning applications: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/planning/census_issues/lehd/ (Accessed 9/24/2012)

2 USDOT Federal Highway Administration Urban Planning Division, Guide to Urban Traffic Volume Counting, 1981, HHP-22/10-81 (OCLC 16112004)

Updated: 03/28/2014
HEP Home Planning Environment Real Estate
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000