An Exploratory Analysis of Weekend Activity Patterns in the San Francisco Bay Area
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Research on travel-demand modeling has predominantly focused on weekday activity-travel patterns, with the study of the effects of commute travel on peak period traffic congestion as a major objective. In contrast, there have been few studies examining the weekend activity-travel behavior of individuals. However, weekend travel volume has been increasing over time and is comparable to weekday travel volumes. Hence, weekend activity-travel patterns warrant careful attention in transportation planning. The focus of this paper is to present a comprehensive exploratory analysis of weekend activity-travel patterns and to contrast weekday and weekend activity participation characteristics. Data from the 2000 San Francisco Bay Area Travel Survey are used in the analysis. A comparative analysis of several aggregate activity-travel characteristics indicates that, while the weekday and weekend travel volumes are comparable, there are several key differences in activity-travel characteristics. Specifically, weekend activity-travel is found to be predominantly leisure oriented and undertaken during the mid-day period. The average trip distances are longer during the weekends. The transit shares are lower but the occupancy levels in personal automobiles are higher during the weekends. The weekend activity sequencing and trip-chaining characteristics explored in this study provide further insights into individuals' activity organization patterns on weekend days. In the overall, this paper highlights the importance of studying weekend activity-travel behavior for transportation planning and air-quality modeling. Insights from this exploratory analysis can form the basis for comprehensive weekend activity-travel modeling efforts.
At the time of publication A.M. Lockwood was at Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc.; and S. Srinivasan and C.R. Bhat were at the University of Texas at Austin.