A Transportation Census That Really Counts

New York City has created its own version of the census to track transportation in the city, a job it says the federal government's counting system does poorly.
May 4, 2011, 2pm PDT | Nate Berg
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The city's transportation commissioner, Janette Sadik-Khan, ordered the development of the census to expand on what the federal government counts, which is only commutes to work and work-related trips.

"New York City, under Ms. Sadik-Khan's direction, has developed its own in-house Transportation Census - an annual index that reports, in almost worryingly granular detail, the rhythms of the metropolis. "We're developing better ways to frame the inquiry of how our transportation system works," the commissioner said. "It's exciting."

A perusal of this year's report, released on Monday, yields nuggets like the average weekday speed of a car driving in Manhattan below 60th Street (9.3 miles per hour, nearly twice the rate of a crosstown bus); the proportion of people in Park Slope, Brooklyn, who drove a car into their neighborhood on a recent day (15 percent, about the same as those who took the subway and bus); and how much of the evening rush on Prince Street in SoHo consists of bicyclists (more than a third)."

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Published on Tuesday, May 3, 2011 in The New York Times
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