Analysis and Integration of Spatial Data for Transportation Planning

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C.A. Quiroga, Y. Li, N.A. Koncz, J.H. Overman

Publication Date:

June 2009


Transportation planning requires substantial amounts of data and cooperation among transportation planning agencies. Advances in computer technology and the increasing availability of geographic information systems (GIS) are giving transportation planners the ability to develop and use data with a much higher degree of efficiency. However, as information systems advance, the need to provide effective data integration/exchange protocols and procedures to reduce redundancy and data collection costs is becoming more important. Many factors influence the effectiveness of data exchange and data integration efforts, such as data compatibility, data access, data quality, completeness, metadata, hardware, software, and staff expertise. This research resulted in a catalog of spatial data sources available to transportation planning agencies in Texas. The work included a synthesis of current transportation planning practices in Texas with a focus on spatial data integration and exchange issues, meetings with transportation planning and data stakeholders, the development of a map of data sources, the development of a preliminary logical data model of spatial data entities, and a compilation of metadata documents for a sample of data sources. Developing the catalog of categories and subcategories for transportation planning spatial data was an interactive process that involved several rounds of data entity categorization; analysis of the resulting structure for inconsistencies, gaps, and redundancies; and subsequent changes to the data entity categorization scheme. In the end, the three-level grouping structure resulted in 7 categories, 63 subcategories, and 589 spatial data entities, The research also resulted in a prototype web-based map and metadata viewer called Transportation Planning GIS (TPGIS) Data Viewer.

Report Number:



Transportation Planning, Spatial Data, GIS, Geographic Information Systems, Global Positioning System, Metadata

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