Authors: Susan Handy, Evelyn Blumenberg, Moira Donahue, Kristin Lovejoy, Caroline Rodier, Susan Shaheen, Kimiko Shiki, and Lily Song
Date: January 2008
California is the destination for over one-quarter of immigrants to the United States, and immigrants now make up over one-quarter of the state’s population. To ensure that transportation systems and services adequately meet the needs of recent immigrants, planners need a firm understanding of the travel behavior of immigrant groups. This paper reports on key findings from a three-phased study: (1) analysis of data on commute travel of California immigrants from the 1980, 1990, and 2000 Censuses; (2) focus groups with recent Mexican immigrants on their transportation experiences and needs in six California regions; and (3) interviews with community-based organizations in nine California regions on the transportation needs and wants of Mexican immigrants. These findings point to a long list of potential strategies for agencies and organizations to consider in efforts to more effectively meet the transportation needs of Mexican and other immigrants in California.