Flowing Data’s new infographic delves into the commuting habits of Americans, drawn from United States Census Bureau’s 2013 American Community Survey. Unsurprisingly in the land of automobiles, driving to work alone is nearly unanimous in its popularity. After that, the second most common transportation method is carpooling, followed by working from home.
The map lets you select which transportation data you want to include, and depending on what you choose, it visualizes which form of transportation is the most popular in any given county. This is mostly useful for comparing how non-drivers get to work, given the popularity of driving. Mousing over any county on the map will also give you a breakdown of how all the various forms of transportation stack up against each other.
At its most informative, the map reveals some interesting insights into how commuting relates to the industries and culture in a given area. As Flowing Data points out, some of the outliers are instructive. In Missouri’s Pulaski County, for example, almost everyone works from home, due to a huge military training base stationed there. Major metropolitan areas with decent public transit systems, like New York, Chicago and San Francisco, show a significantly higher percentage of commuters using those systems instead of driving. In much of the midwest, “working from home” actually refers to farming, and in some rural areas, walking to work is the result of poverty. (Or in the case of San Juan County, Colorado, almost everything is a 10 minute walk away).
Zoom in and check it out, there are many more revealing details to be found.SW