Tag Archives: active transportation

Bike counters: how do they work?

The practice of bike counting through automated counters is well-established. Around the world, cities such as Paris, Manchester, Vancouver, New York, Los Angeles, and Rouen all rely on the technology year-round to capture cycling trends, justify investments, plan infrastructure, and much more.

For the most part, bike counters are discreet and cyclists often do not even realize they are being counted multiple times a day across a network.

So how do bike counters actually work? In this month’s blog post, we’ll provide a brief introduction to the technology behind a few of our counters.

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Case Study: Using Permanent and Temporary Counters in Quebec City

Quebec City is one of North America’s oldest cities and Canada’s 11th largest city with over 500,000 inhabitants. This picturesque city has no shortage of cycling tourism – there are 315 km of bike lanes to explore. In 2016, an official vision was created to encourage cycling as a practical and secure transportation option for visitors and residents alike. Part of this vision includes adapting the cycling network to the largest source of bike traffic – workers and students.

Jean-François Martel, Transportation Planning Advisor at the City of Quebec, shared with us findings from three permanent counters and two mobile counters tracking the numbers of cyclists who use key routes. As bike infrastructure is added or improved, permanent and mobile counters can provide the necessary data to perform before-and-after comparisons and communicate results.

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Winter cycling in Montreal: What’s new in time for WCC 2017

Visiting Montreal for the Winter Cycling Congress in February? This year, improvements in winter maintenance are making winter cycling easier for visitors and seasoned residents alike. Cyclists can now enjoy 429 kilometers of bike paths that will be cleared throughout the winter. 

Montreal’s four-season network is growing and a list of paths can be found here. Here are a few other recent improvements to look out for:

Lachine Canal Snow Removal

A new pilot project by Parks Canada and the City of Montreal clears snow on a 1 km section of the Lachine Canal. The Lachine Canal connects riders to the four-seasons network and is a popular destination for cyclists.

Apps for Finding Your Way

Need to find out if a path is cleared or other information? There’s an app for that! InfoNeige can tell you if a path or trail has been cleared. The app connects to the city’s open data. Use the MonResoVelo app to plan your routes and supply data on your trip back to the City of Montreal for future planning.

Events Celebrating Montreal’s 375th Anniversary

While having no impact on amount of snow on the ground, fun events will lift your spirits. On Saturday, February 11th, take part in a night ride challenge organized by Vélo Québec as a closing event for the Winter Cycling Congress. The event is free event and open to the public.

Learn more about WCC 2017. We’ll be there! David Beitel and Eco-Counter’s Jean-François Rheault will be presenting “Evaluating the temporal evolution of winter bicycle ridership” on February 8th.

Upcoming Event: TRB 2017 in Washington, D.C.

Heading to Washington, D.C. this weekend to take part in the Transportation Research Board’s 96th Annual Meeting? It’s a great opportunity to learn about the latest research and best practices in active transportation data. Eco-Counter will be at Booth 523 to share our expertise and engage in discussions. We also have some top picks for bike-ped data events!

Bike Hack Night, held in conjunction with TRB, is a must-see for all “transportation techies”! Don’t miss a presentation on Tuesday, January 10th by Eco-Counter’s Fraser McLaughlin on bicycle traffic patterns in Arlington revealed through cluster analysis. Simply RSVP on Meetup.com to attend. If you can’t make Bike Hack Night, you can learn more about cluster analysis in Hall E on Monday with Fraser at our research poster on estimating daily bike volumes from short-term counts.

Eco-Counter’s Jean-Francois Rheault will be presenting as the Industry Representative at Quality Volume Data for Bicycling and Walking (Workshop 158) on Sunday from 1:30pm – 4:30pm. Attend to learn more about quality issues in data related to active transportation.

Big data and managing large amounts of information will be a hot topic at TRB 2017. Learn about approaches to handling large data sets at Workshop 109, Big Data Analytics in Transportation on Sunday 9am – 12pm. Advances in data collection for active transportation will also be discussed Session 285, Exploring Innovative Data Sources and Approaches for Bicycle and Pedestrian Data Collection on Monday 10:15am – 12pm. We hope to see you there!

For a full conference program, visit the TRB website.

Image Credit: Johnny Silvercloud