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About INTDAS

Each year, more than 700 of the nation's transit agencies report data to the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) for inclusion in the National Transit Database (NTD)--a uniform data set required by the Urban Mass Transportation (UMT) Act as a prerequisite for the nation's transit systems to receive the FTA grant funds. Known formerly as the Section 15 database, NTD includes data on transit organization characteristics, vehicle fleet size and characteristics, revenues and subsidies, operating and maintenance costs, safety and security, vehicle fleet reliability and inventory, and services consumed and supplied. These data have been used extensively to derive values for transit performance measures and have become the sole source of standardized and comprehensive data for use by all constituencies of the transit industry.

As a major source of performance data for the transit industry, an important application of NTD has been to perform trend analyses that require the use of multiple years of NTD data. However, accessing multiple years of NTD data is a rather tedious process. One major reason is because NTD data are collected and distributed annually on separate files. To perform a trend analysis, for example, one must learn about the file structures that may vary from year to year, identify the specific variables of interest from the vast number of potential NTD variables, and then extract the corresponding data values from the specific files for the specific transit systems. For a ten-year trend analysis, for example, this process must be repeated ten times, one for each data year. After the trend values are separately extracted for each of the ten years, they must be entered manually into a spreadsheet or a statistical program for analysis. This process is very cumbersome and is prone to errors.

Clearly, a solution is to develop an integrated database system that (1) combines the individual NTD data files from multiple years into a single, standardized database, and (2) provides customized tools for quick and easy data retrieval, visualization, and analysis. The Integrated National Transit Database Analysis System (INTDAS) was such a system. It not only allows users to perform trend analyses quickly, but also run peer comparisons and other general database inquiries with just a few clicks of the mouse.

The current version of INTDAS integrates the 1984-2012 NTD data for all transit systems reported to the NTD program and provides customized tools for easy data retrieval, visualization, analysis, and transfer. Major INTDAS features include:

  • Access to original NTD data for all transit systems reported to the NTD program for the 1984-2012 data years.
  • Access to agency-wide and statewide NTD data for over 60 standard performance variables used in Florida.
  • Quick and easy retrieval of data for multiple transit systems of multiple years for trend analyses, peer comparisons, and general data inquiries.
  • SQL query editor for identifying transit systems that meet a certain profile.
  • Automated peer selection process that identifies comparable transit systems for peer analyses.
  • Group transit systems based on selected variables.
  • Easy selection of NTD variables via NTD forms and list boxes.
  • Display retrieved data in tables, forms, and reports.
  • Create bar and line charts for single or multiple variables.
  • Create cross tables interactively to display two variables at a time.
  • Adjust financial variables to constant dollars.
  • Generate standard performance analysis reports.
  • Perform data sorting based on single or multiple variables.
  • Aggregate data by combinations of data year, transit system (NTD ID), mode code, and service type.
  • Perform regression analysis and quickly find correlated variables.
  • Convenient data transfer, etc.

For more information about INTDAS, please contact:

Albert Gan, Ph.D.
Professor
Lehman Center for Transportation Research
Florida International University
Email: gana@fiu.edu (preferred)
Phone: (305) 348-3116



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