DVRPC Releases Initial Results from its Regional Cyclical Bike Counts Program

by | April 27, 2016 | Action Center, Biking in Philly, Biking the Suburbs, Connecting Greater Philadelphia Bicycle Network, research, The Circuit | 0 comments

A permanent bicycle and pedestrian counter on the Cooper River Trail in Collingswood

A permanent bicycle and pedestrian counter on the Cooper River Trail in Collingswood

In 2014 the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC) initiated a cyclical bicycle count program. Bicycle counters were placed at selected locations for one week throughout the nine county region on different types of bicycle facilities. Now, the DVRPC has summarized the first round of cyclical counts completed last year. Counts were taken at almost 150 locations. A smaller number of these locations will be counted every three years on a rotating schedule, enabling the DVRPC to measure regional bicycle and pedestrian traffic trends. All of DVRPC’s bicycle and pedestrian traffic counts are available online, here.

The top 5 cyclical count locations (Average Daily Bikes) are:

  1. South St Bridge (1673)
  2. Spruce between 34th and 36th (1299)
  3. Schuylkill River Trail in Conshohocken (1118)
  4. Spring Garden between 7th and 8th (1062)
  5. Pine between 17th and 18th (1049)

It is probably not a surprise that the South Street Bridge had the highest count of bicycle traffic of the batch in the region. Although that doesn’t mean other locations can sometimes outperform the bridge. On warm sunny weekends the Kelly Drive path can see up to 4,000 bikes a day.

In addition to the cyclical count program the DVRPC has permanent counters like the one pictured above on 11 trails in the Circuit network. In the first year five highest count locations taken in 2014-2015 were all on the Pennsylvania side.

The top 5 permanent bike and pedestrian count locations in the region.

First year totals for the top 5 permanent bike and pedestrian count locations in the region.

The counts on the Cynwyd Heritage Trail were taken before the Manayunk Bridge was opened, it will be interesting to see how these numbers change as gaps in the the Circuit Trail are filled.

DVRPC’s has established one the best bicycle and pedestrian counting programs in the country, this should help transportation officials make informed decision about where, when and how to invest in the regions active transportation system.

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