Home Labor Market Information County to County Commute Patterns

County to County Commute Patterns

Commuting, the flow of workers from one area to another, promotes efficient labor markets. Workers who are willing and able to travel outside their home area will have access to a wider range and greater number of jobs. Employers can manage costs better when they have more applicants for their jobs. For example, in areas where labor force participation is low, such as retirement communities, employers can import workers to provide goods and services to their not-in-the-labor-force populations.

The U.S. Census collects worker data once every decade. The Labor Market Information Division (LMID) has developed maps for the state and selected counties based on the Census 2000 data about California residents and county commute patterns.

Responses to the Census 2000 long-form questionnaire provide the data at the county level about California residents and how far they travel to work. The Census Web site uses "Residence County" for where people live and "Work County" for where people work. See "County-To-County Worker Flow Files" for more information.

Using the data from the Census Web site, LMID developed state and county maps to show the trip origins for people who work in each county and the work destinations for people who live in each county. The commute pattern maps include four statewide maps showing the percentage and number of commuters into and out of California counties.

In addition, LMID created maps for counties that show the number of commuters to and from surrounding counties.