Geospatial Information Tools in the Service of Mobility and Transportation

You are here

Geospatial Information Tools in the Service of Mobility and Transportation


The Center for International Trade and Transportation (CITT) research team developed a survey-based digital walk audit tool, referred to as the digital community-source audit (DCSA), that urban and transportation planners can use to assess transportation systems at a given site. The DCSA provides a means of gathering data in a more dynamic way with an eye toward developing richer and more accurate data models to optimize trade and commute corridors. The DCSA gathers users’ locations when collecting data, and thus the output is a spatial dataset, available for geospatial analysis using GIS software. Survey questions from a paper walk audit checklist used by LA Metro were adopted for use in the DCSA. Testing and feedback from focus groups comprised of transportation consulting professionals, public sector employees, and urban planning students determined the DSCA will improve planning work by enabling the visualization of potential passenger-freight conflicts when planning new developments.



Dr. Thomas O’Brien is the Executive Director for CITT in a full-time capacity and the Associate Director of Long Beach Programs for the METRANS Transportation Center, a partnership of CSULB and the University of Southern California. He also serves as the Director of the FHWA Southwest Transportation Workforce Center (SWTWC). Dr. O’Brien is an instructor in CSULB’s Master of Science in Supply Chain Management (MSSCM), Global Logistics Specialist (GLS), Professional Designation, and Marine Terminal Operations Professional (MTOP) programs. He is a member of the Transportation Research Board’s Intermodal Freight Transport Committee and Intermodal Freight Terminal Design and Operations Committee. He also serves on the Boards of the Southern California Roundtable of the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals, Los Angeles Transportation Club, Foreign Trade Association, and National Transit Institute. Dr. O’Brien also serves as Vice President of CUTC. Dr. O’Brien has a Master’s degree in Urban Planning and Development and a PhD in Policy, Planning, and Development from the University of Southern California. He is both an Eno and Eisenhower Transportation Fellow.


Dr. Tyler Reeb is the Director of Research and Workforce Development for CITT, and the Associate Director of the Federal Highway Administration’s Southwest Transportation Workforce Center housed at CITT. He also serves as the Editor of METRANS NEWS, a tri-quarterly publication that summarizes METRANS research, education, and outreach efforts. Dr. Reeb is the editor of the forthcoming book, Empowering the New Mobility Workforce: Educating, Training, and Inspiring Future Transportation Professionals, to be published by Elsevier. Dr. Reeb leads research teams who address challenges and opportunities related to the new mobility workforce, transformational technology, institutional change, organizational management, and transportation systems management operations (TSM&O). He draws from industry benchmarking, labor market analysis, future scenario planning, systems thinking, enterprise resource planning, and GIS tools to produce research-driven reports, articles/white papers, books, and multimedia products that promote innovation and civic partnerships between leaders in business, government, and education. Dr. Reeb was the lead author for a successful $1.5 million FHWA grant application to fund deployment of the National Transportation Career Pathway Initiative. He is a member of two National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine standing committees focused on Transportation Education & Training and Native American Transportation Issues. Dr. Reeb has a Bachelor’s in English Literature and Mass Media and a PhD in English with emphasis in Transdisciplinary Research Methods.


Benjamin Olson is the Research and GIS Coordinator at the Center for International Trade and Transportation (CITT) at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB). At CITT, Ben manages the center’s GIS projects and research responsibilities. He has contributed to the development of GIS applications and their integration into training programs for working professionals and K-12 audiences. Some topics include passenger-freight conflicts in the Los Angeles region, freight movement in the Inland Empire, the agricultural supply in the Central Valley, and the regional supply chain of Southern California. His published research topics include a needs assessment for the Southern California Regional Transit Training Consortium, developing and testing a digital walk audit to improve community planning, and visualizing disparity in the transportation workforce. He and his partner were finalists in the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) 2018 annual Student Showcase Story Map Challenge for their story map narrating the hypothetical transportation planner career pathway and related education and training of a high school student interested in GIS. Ben received his Master’s in Geographic Information Science from CSULB and Bachelor’s in Statistics and Spanish from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). As a student, Ben worked at the GIS Department at the City of Irvine and at Caterpillar Inc’s Data Innovation Lab at UIUC.

May 2019
Data collection
Geospatial tools



Contact Us

SJSU Research Foundation   210 N. 4th Street, 4th Floor, San Jose, CA 95112    Phone: 408-924-7560   Email: