Results from the Planning for Operations Case Study from the Metroplitan Transportation Commission in San Francisco, California
Applying Analysis Tools in Planning for Operations: Case Study #3 – Using Archived Data As a Tool for Operations Planning
The use of archived data is a time efficient and cost-effective use of resources to produce an "existing conditions" analysis when data are available. By eliminating the need for data collection beyond what they were currently collecting, the MTC resources were spent analyzing the data rather than collecting it, especially because the corridors being analyzed were between 30 and 60 miles in length. With so many lane miles to cover, data collection by hand would have been costly.
Some advantages of using archived data are:
- Availability of data sets dating back to 2001.
- Existence of a large amount of historical data to understand traffic trends.
- Contribution of available data in reaching consensus among stakeholders regarding existing performance of the corridors.
- Ability to identify and distinguish recurrent and nonrecurrent congestion when adequate detector data was available.
- Significant time savings since data were readily available.