Community Indicators for Your Community

Real, lasting community change is built around knowing where you are, where you want to be, and whether your efforts are making a difference. Indicators are a necessary ingredient for sustainable change. And the process of selecting community indicators -- who chooses, how they choose, what they choose -- is as important as the data you select.

This is an archive of thoughts I had about indicators and the community indicators movement. Some of the thinking is outdated, and many of the links may have broken over time.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Transportation Indicators

Many community indicator efforts examine measures of mobility -- how well do community systems support the transportation needs of the citizenry? This may include indicators of commute times, traffic congestion, mass transit use and availability, vehicle miles traveled, effectiveness of roadway systems, transportation planning, commute sheds, or more.

The Washington State Department of Transportation deserves enormous kudos for the resource list it has compiled. They set out to examine best practices in performance measurement for transportation systems across the country, and when they had compiled the lot, they created a website that shares their research with all interested parties.

Go to to see their Performance Measurement Library with links to State DOT sites, with their performance measurement dashboards and their traffic congestion reports. In addition, they've provided links to national (U.S.) data sets; links to Australian and New Zealand data sets; selected city, county, and regional data reports; and other research and reports you may find useful.

If you're looking to create or enhance your community's transportation indicators as a separate index or part of an overall community indicators report, this site is an invaluable starting point.

(Note: If you were a member of the Public Performance Measurement and Reporting Network listserve, you'd know this already ... why not check them out?)


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