Wednesday, April 29, 2015

How do Calgarians commute to work? You told us...

Calgarians commute to work in a variety of ways, but more and more people are choosing to carpool, take transit or ride their bicycle. Beginning in 2011, the Transportation Department has included a question every three years on the Civic Census asking Calgarians how they commute to work. 2011 and 2014 Civic Census shows that over a three-year span, Calgarians have been using more sustainable ways to travel to and from work.  

More Calgarians are choosing sustainable ways to get to work.
The answers given to the census question help us analyse trends in Calgarians’ choices for travelling to work. They also give us a better understanding of how travel behaviour changes after major transportation projects open. “Due to the opening of the West LRT in 2012, more people in the southwest area of Calgary reported taking transit to work in 2014,” said Ekke Kok, Manager of Transportation Data.

By telling us how you commute to work, we are able to track whether or not we are meeting our Calgary Transportation Plan (CTP) targets. One of our primary CTP targets is to increase the number of people choosing to commute to work by walking, cycling, or taking transit. The census data shows that this has already begun to happen, as there was a positive change in the number of people walking, cycling and taking transit between 2011 and 2014 in many communities. At a glance, it is easy to see areas where significant change has taken place due to infrastructure improvements and areas where more choices should be provided so that it is easier to make more sustainable transportation choices.

Individual maps showing the responses for walking, cycling, carpooling, transit, and driving alone to work can be found on the Transportation Data webpage.

Civic Census Data - Click to see larger version.
For more information on how this data was collected, please see


  1. I don't see the point in asking people about only one day. Why not ask how many times they biked to work in the last month, or at least SOMETHING less prone to variation.

    As your own data shows, the temperatures were twice as high, and precipitation two thirds lower in the 2014 map compared to 2011 and that alone would vastly swamp any long term trends in the data.

    1. Hi Peteremcc. The Civic Census takes place over a three week period each spring. Weather changes throughout the time that census information is collected, so the weather information on the maps is an average over the three week time period. Also, we are limited by the type and length of question that can be added to the Civic Census, which is why we use other tools such as My Travel Log and the Central Business District Cordon Count to help us plan our transportation system.