Based on the survey results only 9 percent of households were aware of TravInfo, and less than 1 percent of the Bay area commuters who used traveler information used TravInfo.

25 April 2000
San Francisco,California,United States

Summary Information

This Field Operational Test (FOT) was conducted to evaluate the San Francisco TravInfo regional traveler information system over a two year period from September 1996 to September 1998. The evaluation was performed by the University of California and funded by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the California Department of Transportation. The project objective was to evaluate the performance of advanced traveler information systems (ATIS) in four major areas: 1) Collaboration between public and private parties during ATIS development; 2) Improvements in ATIS available to the public; 3) Stimulation and creation of ATIS in commercial markets; and 4) Enhancement of the San Francisco Bay area transportation system. The general methodologies and survey results relevant to customer satisfaction have been extrapolated from the full report and presented below.


A Traveler Information Center was designed to collect, process, and disseminate information directly to the public through TravInfo, a Travel Advisory Telephone System (TATS) and internet service. TravInfo provided updates on traffic conditions, carpooling, highway construction, bicycling programs, transit and para-transit connections, and airport ground transportation. The Traveler Information Center received updated information from the California Highway Patrol’s computer-aided dispatch system, the Freeway Service Patrol, camera surveillance, airborne traffic reporters, public cell phone callers, and the Transportation Management Center.

The FOT project evaluators used field observations, focus group discussions, in-person interviews, and mail-back surveys to assess the effectiveness of TravInfo. Survey forms were targeted at four different types of users: 1) Bay area households (Broad Area Study), 2) Commuters in the case study corridor (Target Study), 3) TATS callers (TATS caller study), and 4) Internet web site users (Internet information service provider study).


Based on the survey results only 9 percent of households were aware of TravInfo, and less than 1 percent of the Bay area commuters who used traveler information used TravInfo. Considering the low market penetration of TravInfo it produced little change in the overall performance of the Bay area transportation system.

"Although the impact of TravInfo on the overall transportation system was insignificant, it was reported that TravInfo was able to influence travel behavior far more effectively than radio or television broadcasts." The survey results indicated that 25 percent of travelers changed their travel behavior after receiving relevant information from radio or television broadcasts, 45 percent changed their travel behavior after receiving information from TATS, and 81 percent changed their travel behavior after receiving specific route information from the internet service.

See also:

User Response to the Telephone Assisted Traveler Information System in the San Francisco Bay Area (TATS) (October 1998).

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Evaluation of TravInfo Field Operational Test

Author: Yim, Y. and M. Miller

Published By: California PATH Program, University of California

Source Date: 25 April 2000

EDL Number: 12903



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Benefit ID: 2001-00191