Parking Search Caused Congestion: What We Learn from a Controlled GPS Example with Applications to Big Data

Congestion due to drivers looking for parking is much lamented and little understood. A popular notion is that 30% of urban traffic is due to drivers looking for parking. Yet independent evaluations of SFpark, one using field studies and the other simulation based on meter occupancy, found that drivers in the city found parking on their destination block in over 94% of trips. Neither assessment is broadly useful as the first comes from studying neighborhoods known to have parking problems and the other looks at areas where price controls are in place. This study is part of broader effort to use global positioning system (GPS) data to follow vehicle trips that are widely distributed across entire urban areas to understand parking search caused congestion. Here the authors describe the generation and analysis of a controlled group of GPS traces that are used to understand how an uncontrolled GPS trace could be read in order to identify whether a trip includes cruising for parking. In particular, the control trace has a clear statement by the driver when he or she begins the parking search. Cruising is identified when the actual distance traveled exceeds the minimum network path by a certain threshold, or by the presence of an out-of-direction movement by a vehicle near the end of a trip.

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  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This paper was sponsored by TRB committee AP000 Public Transportation Group. Alternate title: Congestion Caused by Parking Search: What We Learn from Controlled GPS Example with Application to Big Data.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Transportation Research Board

    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001
  • Authors:
    • Karlin-Resnick, Joshua
    • Weinberger, Rachel
    • Millard-Ball, Adam
    • Hampshire, Robert
    • Dykstra, Tod
    • Lucas, Kevin
  • Conference:
  • Publication Date: 2016


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; References;
  • Pagination: 12p
  • Monograph Title: TRB 95th Annual Meeting Compendium of Papers

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01595795
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 16-4707
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Jan 12 2016 6:04PM