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Metro Profile Data Collection Method and Sources

Publication Date: May 11, 2022

The Mobility Learning Center uses a variety of sources and data to highlight the state of shared mobility and transportation trends in the most populous 25 metropolitan areas in the United States. These data are discussed across the following categories for each metro area: highlights, core statistics, shared mobility details, electric vehicle infrastructure, and public-private partnerships.

Featured Data

This section uses data from third parties, tools from the Mobility Learning Center, and data from the annual metro profile observation of shared mobility. The Center of Neighborhood and Technology (CNT) Housing and Transportation (H+T®) Affordability Index provides the average cost of transportation. SUMC’s Benefits Calculator Tool provides the estimated greenhouse gas emission reduction. Each profile gets its value by manually entering zero for all the variables and adding the size of the fleets of the bikeshare, e-scooters, and carshare obtained in the Metro Profiles annual screening.

Sources and Data:

Core statistics

The demographic variables listed in this section, along with the transit trends, come from the 2019 American Community Survey 5-years estimates, along with data from the Federal Transit Administration, National Transit Database (NTD) for the total transit trips during 2020, and the trips per service area population, which are the results of the total trips divided by the total service area population.

  • Sources and Data: 
    • 2019 American Community Survey 5-years estimate: Total Population, Median Age, Population Density, Number of Households, Median Household Income, Unemployment Rate, Households Below Poverty Line, Average Vehicles per Households, Households with 0 Vehicles, Households with 1 Vehicle or Less, Means of Transportation to Work.
    • Federal Transit Administration, NTD 2020: Total Transit Trips during the complete year previous to the observation, Trips per Service Area Population.


Shared Mobility – Details 


For most of the Metro Profiles, the fleet size data comes from the provider’s website. In cases where operators did not provide this information on their website, local, regional, and state transportation agencies provide information on permits with the capacity for each provider. As the last source, for a few cities, the fleet size was calculated with an estimate made from the count of the number of docks on Google Maps.

Equity programs: The programs categorized with equity components were selected based on the parameters in the distribution of the vehicles and affordable fare programs. Included in this data point are existing programs overseen or required by local government agencies in a metropolitan area; and does not take into consideration the geographic distribution of shared mobility devices alone.

Accessibility: Not all bikeshare programs offer accessibility programs. However, this category tracked existing programs overseen or required by local government agencies in a metropolitan area, not necessarily linked to the bikeshare providers and the specific fleet options that they provide.

Sources: Providers, Department of Transportation, Journals/Press

Data from these sources: Fleet Size, Vehicles 10k, Change between periods, Type of Fleet, Number of Stations, Stations 10k, Equity and Accessibility Programs.


The e-scooters data is gathered in two categories based on the source, fleet size and fleet capacity. Most transportation agencies in the metropolitan areas have published permits with the fleet capacity for each provider, which is equivalent to the maximum number of vehicles that each provider can allocate in each city. We used the fleet capacity to analyze growth between observations as it was the most accessible number for all the providers. In cases where there was no information from the transportation agencies, the profiles used information from journals and news articles.

Equity: The categorization for equity in the e-scooter sections was determined by the cities’ e-scooter permits and equity requirements, based on affordability programs or equity in the allocations of the vehicles in vulnerable areas.

Adaptable Vehicles: This information was collected from the provider’s website. Some e-scooters providers offer access to adaptable vehicles as part of their fleet.

Sources: Department of Transportation, Providers, Journals/Press

Data from these sources: Fleet Size, Vehicles 10k, Change between periods, Status of the program, Equity and Accessibility Programs.


The primary source for fleet size is the providers’ websites. For Turo and Getaround, the fleet size is the result of counting the number of vehicles available in their catalogs, using the location for each city in the metro areas that we are screening. The dates selected included a range of three weekdays in a week after the day of the data collection, this method allowed for recording a higher number of vehicles available.

For Zipcar, the number of vehicles was obtained by counting the availability of the vehicles in each service area map for each city.

Electric and hybrid vehicles program have listed the size of their fleet on their website. For these programs, it is possible to find information on their fleet and plan of expansion from the transportation agencies.

Equity programs: The categorization of equity in carshare programs was based on the cities’ permits and requirements on allocation or affordability, or Carshare programs developed to serve underserved areas.

Sources: Providers, Department of Transportation

Data from these sources: Fleet Size, Vehicles 10k, Electric/Hybrid Fleets, Equity, Accessibility Programs.

Electric Vehicle Infrastructure

For the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure, the data comes from the Alternative Fuels Data Center from the U.S. Department of Energy, which has a directory of EV stations and total charging points. This directory gives the option to gather the number of charging locations, charging points, and the number of points by level 1, 2, or Direct Current Fast Charging (DCFC).

Sources:  Alternative Fuels Data Center

Data from these sources: EV Charging Locations, EV Charging Points, Number of Charging Points by Category

Public-Private Partnerships

The analysis of public-private partnership (P3) was possible throughout the publications and overviews from the Mobility Learning Center. Each P3 is categorized to allow counting of all the public-private partnerships tracked since 2016. These counts are not meant to represent all public-private partnerships that have formed or are in place.

Source: Mobility Learning Center

Data from this source: Number of public-private partnerships tracked by year.