Establishing a Central Archive for Transit Passenger Data

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Establishing a Central Archive for Transit Passenger Data


This report describes the rationale, background, establishing organization, and future steps of CATPAD, the Central Archive for Transit Passenger Data.

The Central Archive for Transit Passenger Data is a repository that collects, indexes, archives, and makes available online the transit survey instruments, data, and reports collected across the country. This resource is unique in its focus on the disaggregated information of individual transit users – information that is critical for a range of transportation planning analyses. In addition, where available, CATPAD contains aggregated information, such as station boardings and service and fare schedules, to provide key context for the disaggregate person-level data.

The Central Archive for Transit Passenger Data seeks to overcome the current impediments to accessing transit survey data by providing a single, searchable, internet archive to store and disseminate this valuable information. The Central Archive for Transit Passenger Data explicitly aims to expand the public return on the considerable investment made to gather transit passenger data. The resource is designed from the start to serve the needs of a range of use cases from transportation planners and policy makers to researchers and community advocates.

The goal of CATPAD is to make useful data available to inform transit decision making at all levels and to foster ongoing refinement of the nation’s transit network.



Dr. Newmark is an assistant professor of Landscape Architecture and Regional & Community Planning at Kansas State University. His research focuses on the linkages between land use, travel behavior, and the environment, with a particular interest in public transportation policy, use, and finance. He holds a PhD in City and Regional Planning from the University of California, Berkeley, a MSc in Urban and Regional Planning from the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, and a BA in History and International Studies from Yale University.


Dr. Nixon is a Professor of Urban and Regional Planning at San José State University. Her research and teaching interests in environmental planning and policy focus on the relationship between environmental attitudes and behavior, particularly with respect to waste management and linkages between transportation and the environment. She holds a BA from the University of Rochester in Environmental Management and a PhD in Planning, Policy, and Design from the University of California, Irvine.

May 2018
Transit survey
Open data
Passenger information



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