RFTA 2014 Regional Travel Patterns StudyCharlier Associates, Inc. (CAI) led a team of consultants in conducting a regional travel patterns study in the Roaring Fork and Colorado River Valleys (from Parachute, CO to Aspen, CO). The study area is comprised of an 80-mile long economically interconnected, yet geographically confined corridor. This is an update of the two previous studies CAI helped complete in 1998 and 2004. The project is a cooperative effort of the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority (RFTA), Colorado DOT, and area counties and municipalities.
The regional travel patterns study provides local jurisdictions and planning agencies with information on travel demand within area. This includes information about commuter flows, mode share, demographics and other trip characteristics as well as current and future needs for motor vehicles, for public transit and for walking and bicycling. The study also revealed travel response from initiation of the first rural Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system in the country between Aspen and Glenwood Springs in September, 2013. Data from the study was used by CAI to develop travel forecasts and will help companies and agencies design commuter support programs to address needed changes in travel choices.
Charlier Associates conducted both a winter and summer survey to capture travel behavior trends that reflect the seasonal variation in jobs, tourism and weather. Over 1,800 surveys of employees, employers and residents were collected. CAI also compiled census data, transit ridership data, and traffic counts into the project database. An important aspect of the project involved developing the first Transportation Analysis Zone (TAZ) map of the region and all data was collected at the TAZ-level in anticipation of being used in a future travel model.
In October, 2014 Charlier Associates presented preliminary findings of the study to leaders in the Roaring Fork and Colorado River Valleys at the Regional Transportation Forum in Glenwood Springs. The final report was published in September, 2015.