Census Data for Transportation Planning

ACS - American Community Survey

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The American Community Survey (ACS) is the new Census Bureau program to provide continuous sample, or "long form" data, throughout the coming decades. Full scale implementation of the American Community Survey is expected to commence November 2002, with annual data for all geographic areas of 65,000+ population expected starting summer 2004. Very small area data (e.g., census tracts) will be based on an accumulation of five years of ACS data (2003-2007) and will be expected in 2008.

The American Community Survey, formerly known as "Continuous Measurement", was introduced to the transportation planning community in 1994 at the Census and Transportation Planning Conference in Irvine, California. The Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) then convened a panel to examine continuous measurement, and issued an April 1996 report "Implication of Continuous Measurement for the Uses of Census Data in Transporation Planning" (available from BTS.)

 Full-scale pilot testing of the ACS started in 1999 and will be completed in 2002. Thirty one counties were selected as pilot sites to test ACS. Research on comparing and "bridging methodologies" for ACS and standard long form data is underway.

 For more information on the American Community Survey, visit the Census Bureau's ACS web site.

NCHRP Project on ACS/Transportation Planning

This web page will update users on the status of a new NCHRP project, #08-48, entitled "Using American Community Survey Data for Transportation Planning." (NCHRP, the National Cooperative Highway Research Program, is a pooled-fund program sponsored by AASHTO and managed by the Transportation Research Board).

 The NCHRP Project #08-48 is currently pending publication and will be released around February 2008. 

TRB Workshop on ACS, 2002 Annual Meeting

The TRB subcommittee on Census Data for Transportation Planning hosted a half-day workshop on Sunday, January 13, 2002, on the American Community Survey for Transportation Planners. Results of this workshop will be posted on this web site in the near future.

Page last updated: September 12, 2002