The TIGER/Line Files are geographic databases developed by the Census Bureau as part of the 1990 Census to produce local maps for census takers. The TIGER (Topographically Integrated Geographic Encoding and Referencing) files contain the geographic information for every road, railroad, stream, and political boundary in the United States. This research explored state level transportation planning applications of the TIGER/Line files by building a link-node highway microcomputer modeling network from the TIGER data.
The use of TIGER resulted in a network with links and nodes that were accurately located by latitude and longitude and included link lengths. A TIGER-derived network potentially could serve as a powerful basis for incorporating census and, to a lesser extent, non-census based data into a transportation model. The disadvantages of using TIGER to create a model network were found to be roadway detail unnecessary on a state level, a time consuming downloading process, lack of appropriate TIGER manipulation software, and the need for network sorting, editing, and preparation. In spite of these drawbacks, TIGER offers considerable promise as a transportation planning tool, especially for smaller state and state level studies needing a detailed network.