North Shore Transportation Survey

We are continuously collecting data to understand better North Shore residents' daily travel patterns and transportation preferences.

Since 2019, we have partnered with the City of North Vancouver and District of West Vancouver to invite residents to participate in the North Shore Transportation Survey (NSTS). We conducted our last survey in 2021.

Key findings from the 2021 survey 

A summary of highlights from the 2021 North Shore Transportation Survey follows. For more details download and review the final survey report

COVID-19 continued to influence travel patterns in 2021

An overarching theme throughout the report was the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on travel behaviours of North Shore residents. Key factors behind the changes in travel were the continued work and education from home due to pandemic restrictions and precautions, and an increase in hybrid work arrangements where commuting to a traditional office or workplace only occurs a few days a week.

North Shore residents made fewer trips in 2021 than in 2019

Despite a 4% increase in population during this period, North Shore residents made 66,000 fewer daily trips in 2021 than in 2019. Proportionally, auto and walking trips increased while transit trips decreased from 2019 for all municipalities. Despite auto mode share increasing, average annual vehicle kilometres travelled decreased for all North Shore municipalities compared to 2019.

More people are telecommuting than ever before 

The subtotal of individuals working from home at least two days per week or who do not have a usual workplace outside the home increased to 43% of all respondents – a notable increase from 17% in 2019. Only 29% of respondents indicated they never telecommuted in 2021, declining from 47% in 2019.

Active travel remained relatively stable

Active mode share - the number of people walking and cycling compared to other modes - remained relatively stable between 2019 and 2021, with a decrease of 0.8% across the North Shore.

There is considerable potential to convert auto trips to active modes

The survey asked residents about their trip distances and found that almost 40% of current auto trips are bikeable (within 4.6 km), and another 14% are walkable (within 1.6 km).

About the NSTS

Every two years in the fall, we invite a panel of North Shore residents ages 15 and over to participate in the transportation survey using a random recruitment method that includes sending invitations in the mail and calling phone numbers. The next survey will be in fall 2023.

Residents who choose to participate are registered in the survey by answering a few questions about their current travel behaviour and mobility preferences.

Participants also share information about their previous day of travel, including where they went and how they got there.

This local approach provides a more frequent and in-depth insight into the travel patterns and behaviours of residents than the Regional Trip Diary administered by TransLink, and the Canadian Census Journey to Work, which respectively occur every four to five years. Transportation planning on the North Shore considers data from each of these data sources and relies heavily on the NSTS.

Related documents 

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