Non-Private Auto Mode Share

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Target: 58% sustainable transportation mode share by FY2018-19

This measure is based on the travel modes for a sample of trips taken to, from, or within San Francisco. Trip information is used to calculate the percentage of all trips that take place on sustainable transportation modes that do not rely on private automobiles. These sustainable transportation modes include transit, active transportation (walking and biking), and taxis. Private auto modes include driving alone and carpooling.


Note: In fiscal year (FY) 2012-13, taxis and Transportation Network Companies (TNC) (e.g., Lyft, Uber, etc.) were grouped together in the survey.

How San Francisco is Performing

In line with the City Charter’s Transit First Policy, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s (SFMTA) Strategic Plan set a goal of achieving a 50 percent private auto/non-private auto mode split by FY 2017-18. The SFMTA has measured mode shares through the annual Travel Decision Survey since 2012. Over this time period, the SFMTA has succeeded in meeting its strategic goal of at least 50 percent sustainable transportation mode share, with private autos representing less than half of trips for the first time in fall 2013. However, the upward trend of sustainable transportation modes has not been constant, and more work must be done to continue to improve San Francisco’s multi-modal transportation network. A new target of 58 percent of sustainable transportation mode share has been set for fiscal year 2018-19. 

This metric is impacted by work performed by almost all parts of the SFMTA. Efforts to further improve the safety, reliability, and comfort of transit, walking, and biking draw people toward those modes, and reduce congestion for those who choose to drive. Many factors outside the city’s control, such as regional transportation patterns and economic conditions, also affect transportation mode choices.

How Performance is Measured

The Travel Decision Survey is conducted at the beginning of each fiscal year in the fall. It is a telephone-based survey that reaches approximately 800 people, designed to include about half of interviews with San Francisco residents, and about half with residents of other Bay Area counties. The survey is conducted in English, Spanish, and Cantonese, and is delivered to both land-line and mobile numbers.

Travel Decision Survey data are used to report mode shares as a percentage of total trips taken. Private auto modes include driving alone and carpooling, while non-private auto modes include transit, active transportation (walking, biking), and taxis. The overall mode share for San Francisco is a composite of the mode share for San Francisco residents and the mode share for non-San Francisco residents, weighted based on residential trip estimates from the San Francisco Chained Activity Modeling Process (SF-CHAMP), a travel model maintained by the San Francisco County Transportation Authority.

The number displayed on the scorecard page represents the most recent data from the chart above.

Additional Information


Please visit DataSF for the scorecard data.