A transportation-efficient land use mapping index

Anne Vernez Moudon, Sarah E. Kavage, Jean E. Mabry, D. W. Sohn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Land use and transportation are linked by complex, yet identifiable, relationships. Tools are needed to formalize this relationship and to take it into account when decisions are made about urban and suburban transportation systems. This paper reviews foundational concepts of performance measures of metropolitan transportation systems. It offers a rationale for the types of tools needed to measure and assess land use and transportation system efficiency. One tool being developed by the Washington State Department of Transportation - the Transportation-Efficient Land Use Mapping Index (TELUMI) - illustrates how research findings can be applied in metropolitan transportation planning. TELUMI uses cartographic modeling (CM) techniques and parcel-level geographic information system data. The fine resolution of the data measures microscaled land use conditions associated with travel patterns in built-up areas. CM generates maps of zones in a region that match land use conditions with travel behaviors. Zones are defined by land use variables, such as density of activities, presence and agglomeration of destinations, block size, and transportation infrastructure attributes. CM also performs advanced quantitative analyses of map attributes, and it is effective with lay and professional audiences. TELUMI's use of individual land use variables makes it possible to target intervention strategies, such as augmenting density or building sidewalks, and to evaluate their effectiveness in improving transportation efficiency. TELUMI assists transportation and local planning authorities in allocating transportation investments appropriate to multimodal travel.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)134-144
Number of pages11
JournalTransportation Research Record
Issue number1902
Publication statusPublished - 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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