Asheville's Bicycle & Pedestrian Counts
The City of Asheville is currently seeking volunteers to help count bicyclists and pedestrians around town. These counts will provide the data the City needs to prioritize multimodal transportation investments. You can help!
So how does collecting data help? Let’s use your neighborhood greenway as an example. You see a few people biking, walking or running when you use it, but it never seems like a lot. Now think about how many users that same greenway sees throughout the day. These people could be using the greenway to safely get to work, as a pleasant place to walk their dog, or as a jogging path. While it may not be realistic to count the shear number of users and how they’re utilizing the path, the overall data is insightful. Are people using this space? Could more people benefit from this space? These data points will steer greenway, sidewalk, and bike lane investments in the future and demonstrate the need for their maintenance and prioritization.
Implementing a counting program will provide City staff with needed information to defend spending for an existing greenway/sidewalk/bike lane program or aid in applications for grant funding. The usage counts can provide ready answers when elected officials and advocates need to know the benefits of a multimodal transportation network. Moreover, usage counts can inform City engineering staff about the types of crossings needed and other safety improvements.
Collecting this data is helpful to your municipality and your community and, as a volunteer, it is a great way to get out, meet new people, and make a difference!
This year, in coordination with the National Bicycle and Pedestrian Documentation Project, we will count non-motorized users of our streets at a number of specific sites from 5-7 p.m. on one of the following dates:
- Tuesday, September 10th, OR
- Wednesday, September 11th, OR
- Thursday, September 12th.
There are also a few sites available from 7-9 a.m. on those days, and a few sites that are counted on Saturday, September 15th from 9-11 a.m. Volunteer hours are extremely valuable in this effort. If you have questions, you can email Barb Mee: firstname.lastname@example.org.
As a transportation engineering firm, we understand what this data can mean for a municipality looking to review the success of its past projects and where more improvements are needed for the future.
J.M. Teague Engineering and Planning helps clients with traffic studies throughout the year where we use traffic cameras, tubes, and traffic counting software to better visualize areas of congestion and usage. With staff members on both the City of Asheville’s Multimodal Transportation Commission and Greenway Committee, we thought there might be a good opportunity to apply our expertise while helping out the community. We’re partnering with the City to hang cameras at key intersections in order to supplement volunteer hours and collect bicycle and pedestrian data over a longer period of time.
If your business, neighborhood association, or local government needs traffic data collected, we’ve got the tools you need! Contact our Engineering Director, Will Thompsen, at (828) 456-8383 or email@example.com.
Mark Your Calendars!
Planning for the World to Visit: Traffic and Transportation Challenges for the 2018 World Equestrian Games
October 17th, 2019
Hosted by WTS Western NC Chapter at the Land of Sky Regional Council
This presentation will address the traffic and transportation challenges faced in trying to prepare for what was anticipated to be the largest sporting event in North Carolina’s history, drawing visitors from more than 50 different nations. We’ll talk about how we approached the project in the face of constantly changing plans and major weather events, the recommendations and plans J.M. Teague Engineering & Planning prepared, and the lessons learned at various stages of the project. We hope to see you there!
Mark Teague, PE, Owner & Principal Engineer and Candace Hladick, Geospatial Specialist from J.M. Teague Engineering & Planning
Co-sponsored by APA-NC Section 1.
AICP CM credits have been requested, additional CEUs available upon request.