Commuter Mode Choice

Shown here on this series of maps is the mode share of commuters, by census tract, for public transit users, bicyclists, pedestrians, and automobile users.

The maps show those census tracts that generate the largest share of trips for each of the four modes. Evident from the maps are the dispersion of pedestrian commuters throughout the city, particularly around Downtown, USC, Westwood, Northridge, and Hollywood. Bicycle commuters are found in more specific clusters around Venice, USC, Echo Park/Silver Lake, Hollywood, and Studio City/North Hollywood. The clusters of tracts with a high percentage of commuters using public transportation are found in East, South, and Central Los Angeles.  A high concentration of commuters in outer Valley neighborhoods and near LAX utilize the automobile.

And beyond an analysis by census block or at the citywide level, are the general neighborhood commuter patterns. What follows are the top neighborhoods within the City of Los Angeles with the highest share of commuters for each of the four modes:

Public Transit Commuters

Westlake 41.35%
Pico-Union 36.23%
Koreatown 34.84%
East Hollywood 26.80%
Harvard Heights 26.50%
Historic South-Central 24.82%
Downtown 24.51%
Chinatown 23.73%

Bicycle Commuters

University Park 10.48%
Fairfax 3.85%
Venice 3.75%
Toluca Lake 3.74%
Canoga Park 3.02%
Cheviot Hills 2.59%
Vermont Vista 2.08%
Sawtelle 1.99%

Pedestrian Commuters

Westwood 29.08%
University Park 23.89%
Downtown 19.82%
Historic South-Central 9.91%
Boyle Heights 7.35%
Westchester 6.99%
Fairfax 6.96%
Eagle Rock 6.71%

Automobile Commuters

Pacific Palisades 99.34%
Beverly Crest 99.06%
Bel-Air 98.51%
Lake View Terrace 98.17%
Hollywood Hills West 97.58%
Woodland Hills 97.37%
Porter Ranch 97.32%
Shadow Hills 97.26%

Finally we want to highlight those neighborhoods with the highest number of residents who work from home. Allowing employees flexible commuting options such as working from home is an important TDM (Transportation Demand Management) tool that can relieve congestion by taking a significant number of commuters off the roads during the peak travel period. In the City of Los Angeles alone over 90,000 otherwise commuters are giving the transportation system a little breathing room every day. 

Neighborhoods with most employees working from home

Sherman Oaks 3,689
Venice 3,248
Hollywood 2,658
Koreatown 2,531
Brentwood 2,267
Woodland Hills 2,125
Studio City 2,120
Hollywood Hills West 1,942
Westwood 1,893
Westlake 1,696

The data used in the maps and mode choice figures was developed from information provided by the 2010 Census and 2010 American Community Survey, which can be accessed from The neighborhood information was developed by the LA Times and is available at

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2 Responses to Commuter Mode Choice

  1. Tom Williams says:

    As we may have known without the census
    Flat Lands are better for bicycles, and poor people walk and ride buses more, rich people in hills and distance use cars more – usually don’t use transit if more than one transfer. I do Park&Rides – no cost to park – four bus lines to use (headways of <10minutes – which solves the First/Last Mile issues – so as a senior downtown trip to City Hall/7th&Flower total cost $1-gas and <1$ for transport

    This is what is, not what we need/want/can afford – If gasoline goes to $5-6/gal and all-day parking goes to <$10/day-space for 6+months we will change from cars to bikes, buses, and walks

    So I use car, bus, and walk – too old for bikes – came off motor bike three and pedal bike two times – still love the Harley muffles BUT no more.

  2. Pingback: Commute Mode by Neighborhood | Be A Green Commuter Home

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