I'm using ArcGIS 10.1. I have point GPS data of routes of several cars over a few days, and I want to find only the routes where more than one or two different cars passed through (Each GPS points has the car id in it). How can I find a thing like that without going through the data manually ?

EDIT: The time interval (and the distance) between points differs - it moves from minutes to hours and from a few meters to tens of kilometers apart. I'm comparing routes right now by viewing the points by the eye (which isn't accurate or useful in any way). I thought about creating routes using network analyst, but as I have a lot of points I kind of hoped to fan out the less popular ways first, and calculating routes for only the popular ones...

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    What is the time interval of your GPS returns? This makes a big difference on how you create routes. From my experience, anything more than 10 seconds and you are probably going to need to network dataset. – blord-castillo Mar 2 '14 at 0:22
  • What is the distance between points along the route, or the time interval as asked by @blord? There are a few solutions but this is an important part of the question! – Simbamangu Mar 3 '14 at 5:20
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    Are you defining the 'routes where ... cars passed' as a whole segment travelled OR that the cars passed a certain point along that route? – Simbamangu Mar 3 '14 at 5:37

I would use the Points To Line tool first to create lines for each route from your GPS points.

I would then Buffer these lines by a distance that you experiment with - it will be related to how much variation there is in your GPS accuracy.

The last step will be to Intersect your buffers to see where they (i.e. your car routes) overlap.


I would do "map-matching" of all your high sample GPS data or shortest paths for the low sample data. Then keep only the road segments for which there is a substantial amount of traffic (arbitrarily defined by your needs). Then keep the routes which used at least one of these segments. ( Disclaimer: check my profile for the map-matching API).

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