How Freight Moves: Estimating Mileage and Routes Using an Innovative GIS Tool

The Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) has developed an innovative software tool, called GeoMiler, that is helping researchers better estimate freight travel. GeoMiler is being used to compute mileages along likely routes for the nearly 6 million freight shipments expected to be reported in the 2007 Commodity Flow Survey (CFS), the nation’s largest survey of freight movements. These computations are used in estimating modal ton-miles of freight—a key measure for understanding the use and performance of our nation’s freight transportation system. BTS, part of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), developed GeoMiler using current Geographic Information System (GIS) technology to assign routes and calculate mileage from the true origin to the true destination of each freight shipment even when more than one freight mode is used. While developed for use in the CFS, the tool’s integration of core GIS technology and its modeling approach can be used for any multimodal freight movement at all geographic levels.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Edition: Technical Report
  • Features: Figures;
  • Pagination: 6p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01054417
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: TR - 001
  • Created Date: Jul 26 2007 11:16AM