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Bay Area Travel Survey, 1990 (ICPSR 34796)

Principal Investigator(s): Charns, Harold, E.H. White and Company, Inc.; Nelson, Bonnie, Nelson/Nygaard Consulting Associates


The 1990 Bay Area Travel Survey sampled households in California's nine-county Bay Area (including the cities of San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose) in order to collect detailed travel data regarding residents' driving habits and public transit use. Potential respondents were identified via computer generated random telephone sampling; willing participants were tasked with completing a mailed travel diary for each household member over the age of 5 for an assigned "typical weekday" of travel activity. Respondents recorded details of their movement throughout the day, including trip locations, mode of transportation, bridges traversed, public transit routes, trip start and end times, trip purpose, trip activities, number of passengers, and cost of transit fare and/or parking. Following the assigned travel day, a second call was placed to each respondent in order collect the travel diary data. Demographic information for individuals and households includes gender, age, driver's license status, ethnicity, employment status, occupation, household size, and income.

Series: Metropolitan Travel Behavior Survey Series

Access Notes

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Study Description


Charns, Harold, and Bonnie Nelson. Bay Area Travel Survey, 1990. ICPSR34796-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2015-01-19. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR34796.v1

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR34796.v1

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Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    automobile use, automobiles, carpools, commuting (travel), disabilities, driving habits, employment, households, public transportation, traffic, transportation, travel, vehicles

Smallest Geographic Unit:    census tract

Geographic Coverage:    California, Oakland, San Francisco, San Jose, United States

Time Period:   

  • 1990

Date of Collection:   

  • 1990-03-20--1990-06-30
  • 1990-09-09--1990-10-19

Unit of Observation:    individual, household

Universe:    All residential households with telephones in the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area (including Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma counties).

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Due to incomplete study documentation, this collection has been minimally processed by ICPSR.

The 1996 and 2000 Bay Area Travel Surveys are available as ICPSR 34797 and ICPSR 34805.

For additional information on the Bay Area Travel Survey series, please visit the Metropolitan Travel Survey Archive Web site and the San Francisco Metropolitan Transportation Commission Web site.


Study Purpose:    The purpose of the Bay Area Travel Surveys series was to gather basic travel behavior information from Bay Area residents, in order to help inform transportation planning decisions, and to assist in the development of lasting solutions for chronic traffic problems in the region.

Sample:    For information regarding sampling, please see the Original P.I. Documentation section of the ICPSR Codebook.

Time Method:    Cross-sectional

Weight:    The data are not weighted. However, this collection contains four expansion factor variables: PFACTOR (Person expansion factor - SDS, MDS), PFACTORC (Person expansion factor - CD), HHFCTR (Household expansion factor - SDS, MDS), and HHFCTRC (Household expansion factor - CS). No additional information was provided regarding these variables.

Mode of Data Collection:    mail questionnaire, telephone interview

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Created variable labels and/or value labels.


Original ICPSR Release:   2015-01-19



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