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Transportation Model


The SANDAG transportation model provides a systematic analytical platform so that different alternatives and inputs can be evaluated in an iterative and controlled environment.

Transportation Modeling

San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) plans for complex mobility issues facing the San Diego region through the development of a long-range Regional Plan (RP). Transportation and land use models are used to forecast potential future scenarios of where people will live and how they will travel. Models are the principal tools used for alternatives analysis, and they provide planners and decision makers with information to help them equitably allocate scarce resources. The SANDAG transportation model, an activity-based model (ABM), provides a systematic analytical platform so that different alternatives and inputs can be evaluated in an iterative and controlled environment. An ABM simulates individual and household transportation decisions that compose their daily travel itinerary. People travel outside their home for activities such as work, school, shopping, healthcare, and recreation, and the ABM attempts to predict whether, where, when, and how this travel occurs. .

ABM 2+ is the most recent version of the SANDAG ABM. A peer reviewed model, it was designed for application in the 2021 Regional Plan, a bold new vision that provides compelling alternatives to driving. It also considers emerging technologies, including autonomous vehicles, shared mobility, ride hailing, transformative modes, and micromobility. ABM2 was used for the 2019 Federal Regional Transportation Plan and has a base year of 2016. ABM1 was used for the 2015 Regional Plan and has a base year of 2012.

SANDAG Models and Associated Plans:

Transportation Modeling Forum

SANDAG hosts a bi-annual transportation modeling forum as a platform for staff to transfer knowledge regarding development and application of travel demand modeling and provide updates on current projects. Attendees usually include jurisdiction planning and engineering staff, transportation planning and engineering consultants, and state agencies such as Caltrans and Air Resources Board.

Data Dissemination

  • Transportation Forecast Information Center (TFIC): Access to SANDAG's regional transportation model forecasts. TFIC allows for forecast data to be viewed spatially and in tabular format.
  • Average Daily Traffic (ADT) Counts: Average traffic counts/ volumes for both local jurisdictions and regional freeways and state highways, as well as vehicle miles traveled (VMT).
  • Data Surfer: Census, estimate, and forecast data for the San Diego region.
  • VMT/CAP Portal: Online resource for climate planning data for the San Diego region.
  • SB 743 Portal: Provides an estimate of personal vehicle travel by residents and employees within the San Diego region at the City, CPA, and Census Tract level.

Service Bureau

The SANDAG Service Bureau is the preferred source for customized demographic and economic studies, data and analysis, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) analysis and mapping, and transportation modeling. Made up of skilled researchers, statisticians, and industry veterans, the Service Bureau's consulting and research is available to government agencies and private businesses on a fee-for-service basis. Service Bureau projects utilize ABM1 and ABM2. To learn more about the Service Bureau, click here.

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