Research Projects

Stop the Video

Research Projects

STATUS: In Progress YEAR: 2023 TOPIC AREA: Public transit, land use, and urban mobility CENTER: PSR

The Impact of Work-from-Home on Job and Housing Location in the Bay Area - Central Valley Region: An Analysis of the Relationship Between Traffic, Telecommuting, and Migration During and After COVID-19

Project Summary

Project number: PSR-22-08
Funding source: Caltrans
Contract number: 65A0674
Funding amount$78,334.00
Performance period: 8/1/2023 to 7/31/2024

Project description

Work-from-home, a frequently used term in the past two years, is one of
the forms of telecommuting. Pre-pandemic, the share of telecommuters
remained persistently low in the U.S. The spread of COVID-19 in early
2020 has led to an increase in remote working. It is still unclear if the
impact of COVID-19 on telecommuting will be temporary or permanent.
Some believe that the work environment will revert to pre-pandemic
norms after the crisis ends, while others believe that work-from-home
will become a more regular phenomenon, enabling and prompting
telecommuters to move further away from the job centers. This project
will measure the change in commute patterns and work-from-home
levels before and after COVID-19 in the combined San Francisco Bay Area
region and nearby counties in the Central Valley by using four different
datasets: StreetLight, SafeGraph, American Community Survey (ACS), and
USPS Change of Address (COA). We will identify major areas of trip
attractions and analyze the change in commute volume at these locations
during the pandemic. We will then identify areas that produce these
changes by using the commute flow data to connect job locations and
residential locations. Last, we will assess the demographics of these
telecommuters and test whether they are more likely to move further
away from job centers. The results of this research will be pivotal for
transportation professionals and urban planners seeking to better
understand telecommuting, its causes, and potential planning and policy


Marlon Boarnet
Senior Associate Dean, Academic Affairs; Professor & Director of Graduate Programs in Urban Planning, Sol Price School of Public Policy
650 Childs Way
Ralph and Goldy Lewis Hall (RGL) 301CLos Angeles, CA 90089-0626
United States
[email protected]