Friday, July 8, 2011

Impressive Gains

The Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO)  which attempts to do region-wide planning for all the towns and cities in the Boston area just released data from their latest bike/ ped counts.  Most of the locations are in/ around the Charles river basin,  so I don't know how these would compare to the counts say on Hampshire in Somerville, or Mass Ave in Central Sq.

I think that it's very interesting that there's such a huge increase across all the bridges-  112% across Longellow,  80% across Mass Ave,  even 65% over the Anderson bridge, which is not fun to bike over, with no bike lanes, and a lot of traffic.   Also worth noting is the weather- despite it being May, the weather that day was MID 40's and still there was such a dramatic increase.   Imagine if it had been one of those glorious 60 degree days that feel like the most beautiful spring day ever?

I'm biased I know, but this seems like both confirmation of the increase I've seen in cyclists,  and a validation of "if you build it they will come" There's been a big increase in infrastructure in the last 3 years especially, and I can't believe that the uptick in numbers isn't related.


  1. Clearly, however, the increase over the Anderson bridge says something beyond just infrastructure is going on. It is important to understand all the factors and I hope they're doing that. Some of the factors may be free and THOSE can be emphasized all the more when times are tight, such as now.

    Even infrastructure, as we both know, is sometimes a waste of money and sometimes a godsend. It behooves all of us to help the designers understand those differences.

  2. I'm a transit geek, an active transportation geek, and a data geek. I love when the numbers need no "spin" to suggest that a few simple infrastructure investments go a long way. (All puns intended.)

  3. Steve,
    there isn't a bike lane on the Anderson (yet) but there are new bike lanes and sharrows on the Boston side of it, providing a new route from Brookline and the student-heavy neighborhoods of Brighton and Allston to cambridge and harvard.