Subcommittee on Census Data for Transportation Planning
Federal Highway Administration
Metropolitan Planning Division and
Office of Highway Information Mgt
In cooperation with the TRB Subcommittee on Census Data for Transportation Planning
C T P P  2 0 0 0  Status Report
June 1998
The Census is Coming Faster Than You Think
CTPP Feedback--Initial Results Planning for CTPP Improvements
2000 Dress Rehearsal
Scope Meeting
TAZ Update Program
American Community Survey
TRB Subcommittee
Message from the Chair
CTPP Contacts
Census Regional Contacts
"Surf's Up"
CTPP Feedback--Initial Results
In the February 1998 issue of the CTPP Status Report we asked for your input regarding the CTPP 2000.  Responses to date have been relatively slow in coming, but we wanted to provide you with a summary of what folks have told us so far.  As of 6/1/98 we have received a total of 52 responses 47 from MPOs and 5 from state DOTs.  The following is a synopsis of those responses.  The topic heading (shown in bold) is followed by the response summary.
Tables Not Used in 1990 
Since most of the respondents are from MPOs, the CTPP Urban packages were used more often than the Statewide packages.
GIS Software Used 
Similar to the 1993 NARC GIS survey of MPOs, ArcView and ArcInfo have been predominant (85%) to-date.
Tables Used by More Than 10 of the 52 Respondents in 1990 
Most respondents reported using Part 1 (residence geography) more than Part 2 (workplace geography) or Part 3 (Flow between home and work).  Vehicle availability, mode to work, and household income - by number of workers were tables selected by over half the respondents.
Best GIS Exchange Format? 
ArcView 32 
ArcInfo 15
New Recommended Tabs for CTPP 2000? 
A variety of recommendations have been made for additional tables for CTPP 2000, but there hasnít been enough responses to group or catagorize these topics.
GIS Baseline Used? 
One-half of the respondents worked with GIS systems using TIGER or an enhanced TIGER GIS baseline.
Best Way to Access CTPP 2000 Tables? 
Responses thus far have favored using Spreadsheet (Excel or Lotus) (58%) or dBASE (50%) formats as one of their options.  Note respondents could select more than one option so the totals donít sum to 100%
Can You Help in 2000 Workplace Coding? 
Over 80% of the respondents stated that they could provide assistance in workplace coding.  In some cases the assistance offered was conditional on staff availability at the time.
Feedback Response Due Date
Please communicate your comments regarding the CTPP to Tom Mank by July 10, 1998.  A brief list of questions for your feedback is provided at the end of this report. Either use this page to fax your response or send Tom an e-mail.

Planning for Improvements in CTPP 2000
DOT and the Bureau of the Census have begun the initial planning for the continuation of the CTPP Program for the 2000 census.  The planning process is focused on making improvements over the 1990 program, especially in the areas of the accuracy of the place-of-work data and the timely delivery of the data to States and MPOs in an easily accessible form.  Improvements under discussion include:  earlier inclusion of TAZ boundaries in the Census Bureau's TIGER geographic base to allow for earlier tabulation of the CTPP, digital submission of TAZ definitions by States and MPOs,  State and MPO participation in place-of-work coding to improve the quality of the place-of-work data through local knowledge, and state-of-the art dissemination media for the CTPP data.

Journey-to-work and other socioeconomic data from the census are the baseline used for State and metropolitan transportation planning.  The data provided in CTPP 2000 will be especially important because the 2000 census will be the last to include a "long-form questionnaire" to collect this type of information.  Instead, the Census Bureau will initiate a program to collect such data during the next decade as part of a continuous monthly survey called The American Community Survey.  Data from the 2000 census with be critical for States and MPOs to make the transition to American Community Survey data.

2000 Dress Rehearsal
The 2000 Dress Rehearsal is progressing on schedule.  The only early feedback received to-date is the response rates from each of the three sites:
Sacramento, CA 
Total questionnaires delivered or mailed = 173,501 
Initial Response Rate (as of 4/24/98) = 47.1%
Columbia, SC 
Total questionnaires delivered or mailed = 284,979 
Initial Response Rate (as of 4/24/98) = 48.9%
Menominee Reservation, WI 
Total questionnaires delivered or mailed = 1964 
Initial Response Rate (as of 4/24/98) = 37.1%
As the Dress Rehearsal continues, up-to-date response rates can be found at:
And for more information about the dress rehersal:

SCOP Meeting
At the AASHTO Standing Committee on Planning (SCOP) mid-year meeting on June 6, 1998, DOT will be proposing a CTPP 2000 funding process similar to that used in 1990.  The production of the 1990 CTPP for all States and MPOs was sponsored by the State departments of transportation under a pooled funding arrangement with AASHTO.  By producing the data for the entire  nation under one contract, consistent data for the same point in time were available for all States and MPO transportation study areas, and the cost per State was lower than with individual contracts.  The cost of the 1990 CTPP program for each State was one cent per person residing in that State.

 ACS Symposium Introduction
On March 25, 1998, Elaine Murakami attended the American Community Survey (ACS) Symposium presented by the U. S. Bureau of the Census in Suitland, MD.  Following are Elaine's comments on the conference:

The American Community Survey (ACS) is designed to provide annual data for States, large metropolitan areas, and large cities for items traditionally surveyed in the "long form".  For smaller geographic areas, like census tracts and block groups, the data will need to be accumulated over several years before it can be released because of confidentiality restrictions and large sample error (due to the smaller geographic reporting units). It is expected that the "long form" will cease to exist after Census 2000.  In its place, a survey to sample households continuously, at 250,000 households per month, has been designed by the Census Bureau.  This survey is the ACS.  Some of the differences between a "long form" conducted with the Decennial Census and the ACS design are depicted in the Table below.

Decennial Census "long form" American Community Survey (current design)
Data only once every 10 years  Annual data for large geographic units
Data for a single point in time  Data will need to be accumulated over several years to get smaller geographic reporting, such as tracts and block groups.
Higher response rates due to publicity surrounding Decennial Census Lower response rate, and greater chance of non-response bias
Questions are developed once every 10 years  Questions could potentially be changed over time, but effect on data that needs to be accumulated will need to be evaluated.  New questions could be added, but adds risk of changing response rates.
Requires very large labor force, once every 10 years.  Finding a large temporary labor force has become a problem in recent years because so many women are in the labor force. Permanent labor force committed to the ACS.  Better training, better understanding of the use of the data, etc.
In 1995/96, a test of ACS was conducted in four counties: Multnomah County, OR (Portland); Rockland County, NY; Brevard County, FL; and Fulton County PA.

The Current plan is that 37 counties will be part of ACS comparison program in 1999 through 2001.  This will provide a large sample for which direct comparisons to the Census 2000 "long form" sample can be made.  Specifically, a 3-year accumulation can be compared to a point-in-time data sample for the same geographic area.

Also, in 2000-2002, the Census Bureau plans a national comparison sample of 700,000 housing units.  This will allow state estimates and estimates for geographic areas of 250,000 persons or more, e.g. large counties or cities.

In 2003, it is planned that ACS will go into production mode, with a 3% sample of households surveyed each year, with sample spread over the 12 months.

The ACS survey process differs significantly from decennial census process.  It includes mail, computer assisted telephone interviewing (CATI), and computer assisted personal interviews (CAPI).  The mail process includes a survey pre-notification, an initial questionnaire, a reminder card and a replacement questionnaire.  In the 4 county demonstration, the source of the data was as follows:

The mail process was successful for owner-occupied units, and those with higher than average age.  CAPI was disproportionately used in black and renter neighborhoods.  Areas that commonly have lower response rates to government surveys, such as low income, central city residents had lower response rates to the ACS test than to decennial census (1990).  Populations that had good response rates in ACS were owners and 1 or 2 person households.

When Mr. Lynn Weidman (Demographic Statistical Methods Division) was asked what the Census Bureau was going to do as a result of these findings, he said they did not have specific plans to oversample in black areas, but considered oversampling with CATI in areas with low MAIL response.  Also they are considering different publicity campaigns, and revisions to the questionnaire design.

Local Review of ACS Test Data
The four local representatives said they had only two weeks to look at the data.  Generally, they found that the ACS had a lower overall response rate compared to decennial census, but lower allocation of data items.    David Freedman (UC Berkeley) reminded the audience that the ACS would sample about 50 housing units per tract per year, so that small area data would have very large error inherent.   The local representatives had not had time to look at how data collection spread over 12 months differed from point-in-time data.
Various ACS Data Comparability Issues
Income--When doing decennial census (April 1), people have their last year tax returns on their minds.  Thus, reporting last yearís income is easier.  For ACS, the question is "past 12 months."  ACS result, the median household income was too low, when comparing ACS 1996 data to 1990 decennial data adjusted to 1996 dollars.

Housing unit vacancy rates--In the ACS there is about a 2 1/2 month data collection period for each housing unit, while it transitions between mail--CATI--CAPI survey process.  In that time, some housing units transition between vacant and occupied.  Using Current Population Survey (CPS) data, Census Bureau estimates that in that 2 1/2 month window, 20.6% of vacant units become occupied, and 2.3% of occupied units become vacant.  Thus, a 10% vacancy measured from a point-in-time survey, like the traditional decennial census, will appear as an 8.4% vacancy from the ACS.

Research Meeting -- Portland, Oregeon
On June 2, the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) has scheduled a discussion group to meet in Portland, OR to establish research priorities for the use of ACS for transportation planning purposes. At this meeting, these issues will be discussed with MPOs and Portland State University officials to develop a research agenda for the Multnomah County data and to begin discussions of an overall national research program for the proposed 37 "bridge" counties.  Ed Christopher (CATS),  Chuck Purvis (MTC), and Elaine Murakami (FHWA) will attend these meetings.

TRB Subcommittee: Message from the Chair
It's Here and Open for Business!
Last month we launched an electronic mailing list that anyone with an e-mail address can join.  The way the list works is quite simple.  Just write an e-mail to the mailing list address and it is automatically distributed to all the subscribers on the list!  It's a perfect way to keep in touch, share expertise, advance the developments of census data or explore an idea.  Do you have a particular interest in the census data?  Then this is the place to be!

The mailing list is called ctpp-news.  It is maintained as a volunteer effort by Chris Parrinello who has it running on a personal server called  Chris is a software engineer for Motorola Corporation, friend of the committee and committed to providing safeguards from spam and Internet trickery.

To join the ctpp-news is easy.  You can either phone me (312-793-3467) or go through the automated process by sending an e-mail to with the words "subscribe ctpp-news" in the body of the message.  Once you have subscribed, you can post to all the

Right now the list has about 85 subscribers.  My hope is to see it get upwards of 250 individuals and include those from all the MPOs, consultants, states and anyone else who has worked with CTPP data.  From a list development perspective, I look at the ctpp-news as a building block for those who have an interest in census data transportation matters as a community.

For more information about our mailing list go to:

Ed Christopher, Chair


Help us design a logo for CTPP 2000!  We are looking for your ideas!  Your design should reflect journey-to-work, transportation, and census data concepts.  Please submit your ideas to Tom Mank.   Have fun and letís see what youíve got!

TAZ Update Program
For CTPP 2000, Census will be require TAZ boundary delineations from MPOs and DOTs prior to Census 2000.  Currently, U.S. DOT is working on a process to facilitate the digital submittal of TAZ boundaries.

Enclosed with this snail-mailed version of this Status Report is a publication called "CTPP 2000 Special Report" - TAZ Update Program.  It explains the CTPP 2000 TAZ submittal process for MPOs and DOTs.  This report is an official notification of the planned process and schedule for all participants who will be submitting TAZs to the Census Bureau for CTPP 2000.  Formal, detailed instructions on TAZ delineations and submittals will be sent out to all MPOs and DOTs in early 1999.  It is important to get this document and prepare your organizations accordingly.

If you would like a copy of "CTPP 2000 Special Report" - TAZ Update Program"  just drop an email to Tom Mank.


"Surf's Up"   Web Sites  to Remember

Make  sure to complete your Feedback questionnaire. 

We do need to know what you think about 1990 package.

Statistical Area Program Coordination 
The Census Bureau suggests that MPOs / DOTs begin consulting with their local Statistical Areas Program regarding potential changes to census boundaries.  Your involvement will help ensure local level consistency between TAZs and census boundaries.
The Subcommittee on Census Data for Transportation Planning will hold its second meeting as part of the Urban Data Committee session at the TRB mid-year conference in Seattle, WA on Tuesday, July 14 (8:30 AM - Noon) - Session A1D08. (Agenda)  
 CTPP Contacts
TRB Committees
Ed Christopher (Census Subcommittee Chair)   
PH: 312-793-3467   
FAX: 312-793-3481 
Ron Tweedie (State Data Committee Chair)   
PH: 518-457-1695   
FAX: 518-457-8317
Ed Limoges (Census Subcommittee Secretary)   
PH: 313-961-4266   
FAX: 313-961-4869
Census Population Division (JTW questions)
Phil Salopek   
PH: 301-457-2454   
FAX: 301-457-2481 
Ernest Wilson   
PH: 301-457-2451   
FAX: 301-457-2481 
Celia Boertlein 
PH: 301-457-2454 
FAX: 301-457-2481
Census Geography Division (for TAZ update questions)
Todd Blair   
PH: 301-457-1099   
FAX: 301-457-4710 
Tom Mank (2000 CTPP Status questions)   
PH: 202-366-4087   
FAX: 202-366-7660
Elaine Murakami   
PH: 202-366-6971   
FAX: 202-366-7742
Jerry Everett   
PH: 202-366-4079   
FAX: 202-366-3713 
Phil Fulton   
PH: 202-366-1793   
FAX: 202-366-3640 
Wende O'Neill   
PH: 202-366-8876   
FAX: 202-366-3640   

Census Bureau Regional Office Contacts
For up-to-date Regional Census Center information go to
Area Covered
Alabama, Florida, Georgia Mr. Gene Wallace   
 (404) 730-3955 
Bureau of the Census   
101 Marietta St NW   
Suite 3200   
Atlanta, GA30303-2700 
Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, and New York (part-balance not covered by the New York Office); Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.  Ms. Denise Smith   

Mr. Vincent Pito   
 (617) 424-0513 

Bureau of the Census   
2 Copley Place Suite 301 P.O.Box 9108   
Boston, MA 02117-9108 
Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia  Mr. David Wiggins   
 (704) 344-6702
Bureau of the Census   
901 Center Park Drive   
Suite 106   
Charlotte, NC 28217
Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin  Ms. Linda Gray   
 (708) 562-1698 
Bureau of the Census   
2255 Enterprise Drive   
Suite 5501   
Westchester, IL 60154
Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas Mr. Ken Harris  

Mr. Demain Deloney   
 (214) 640-4472 

Bureau of the Census   
6303 Harry Hines Blvd   
Suite 210   
Dallas, TX 75235-5269
Arizona, Colorado, Montana, Nebraskaa, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming  Mr. Jim Castagneri   
 (303) 969-7760
Bureau of the Census   
6900 W Jefferson Ave   
Denver, CO 80235-2032 
Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia Mr. Gordon Rector   
 (313) 259-2605
Bureau of the Census   
1395 Brewery Pk Blvd   
P.O. Box 33405   
Detroit, MI 48232-5405
Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Oklahoma Mr. Mathew Milbrodt   
 (913) 551-6750
Bureau of the Census   
Gateway Tower II   
Suite 600   
400 State Avenue   
Kansas City, KS 66101 
California (part): Fresno, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, King, Los Angeles, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, Monterey, Orange, Riverside, San Benito, San Bernadino, San Diego, San Louis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Tulare, and Ventura Counties; Hawaii; Guam; American Samoa; No. Mariana Is  Mr. Tim McMonagle   
 (818) 904-6364 
Bureau of the Census   
15350 Sherman Way   
Suite 300 Van Nuys   
CA 91406-4224 
New York
New York (part): Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Queens, Richmond, Rockland, Suffolk, Hudson, and Westchester Counties; New Jersey (part): Bergen, Essex, Middlesex, Morris, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, Warren Counties  Mr. Jonathan Martin   
 (212) 620-4803 
Bureau of the Census   
201 Varick Street   
9th Floor Census Center   
New York, NY 10014-4826 
Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey (part-balance not covered by the New York Office), Pennsylvania  Ms. Vicki Lewis   
 (215) 597-1990
Bureau of the Census   
105 South First Floor   
7th Street   
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Alaska, California (part-balance not covered by the Los Angeles Regional Office), Idaho, Oregon, Washington  Mr. Rick Campbell   
 (206) 728-5410   
Ms. Elena Baranov   
 (206) 728-5309
Bureau of the Census   
Suite 500   
101 Stewart Street   
Seattle, WA 98101 

CTPP Feedback

1. What tables did you use from the 1990 CTPP?

A. Statewide, please list: 

B. Urban, please list: 

2. What tables from the 1990 CTPP were of least importance to you?

A. Statewide, please list: 

B. Urban, please list: 

3. What data or tabulations would you like to have available for the 2000 CTPP which were not part of the 1990 CTPP? 

4. What is the best way for you to access the 2000 CTPP data tables [ASCII, dBASE, Spreadsheet (Excel, Lotus, Quattro Pro), SAS, GIS-based, other - please specify]? 

5. What GIS software / hardware do you currently use? What GIS format would be best for digital file exchange [ASCII comma delimited, ASCII space delimited, ARC Export files or shapefiles, other GIS data formats (Transcad, MapInfo, Intergraph, etc), CAD dxf]?? 

6. What is the source of your GIS base map (TIGER, ETAK, other private vendor, created in-house, other)? 

7. If given the opportunity, would you assign staff and resources to participate in workplace coding for 2000? 

Please submit questionnaire responses to:
FAX: 202-366-7660
Phone: 202-366-4087
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