National study offers new bike count models: Combining traditional counters and emerging GPS data
Automated bicycle counter on Portland’s Tilikum Crossing bridge. Credit score: Cait McCusker

In an effort to make certain bicyclists’ wants are thought of when bettering a transportation system, planners and engineers must know the way many individuals are biking, and the place.

Conventional bicycle counters can present knowledge for restricted sections of the bike community, usually these counters are put in at necessary areas like trails or bridges. Whereas restricted in location, they depend everybody who bikes by. In the meantime, GPS & cellular knowledge cowl all the transportation community, however that knowledge solely represents these vacationers who’re utilizing smartphones or GPS. Combining the normal location-based knowledge sources with this new, crowdsourced knowledge might provide higher accuracy than any might present alone.

“Understanding how many individuals are bicycling on a road is absolutely necessary for various causes. As just some examples, bicycle volumes provide you with a option to perceive security knowledge and decide crash charges. They supply perception into the place and the way bicycle journeys are going down, which will help plan for brand spanking new or improved services,” stated Nathan McNeil of Portland State College.

Supported by a pooled fund grant administered by the Nationwide Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC), Dr. Sirisha Kothuri of Portland State College led a analysis undertaking geared toward fusing conventional and rising knowledge sources collectively, to derive bicycle volumes for a complete transportation community. They developed three fashions and examined them in six cities: Dallas, Texas; Portland, Bend and Eugene, Oregon; Boulder, Colorado; and Charlotte, North Carolina.

Creating Three Bike Rely Fashions

With Kothuri as principal investigator, the analysis workforce included Joe Broach and Nathan McNeil of PSU; Kate Hyun, Stephen Mattingly and Md. Mintu Miah of the College of Texas at Arlington; Krista Nordback of the College of North Carolina’s Freeway Security Analysis Heart, and Frank Proulx of Frank Proulx Consulting LLC.

First, the workforce carried out a literature evaluate whereas cataloging and evaluating the obtainable third-party knowledge sources and current functions. They selected the six research websites to signify a wide range of city and suburban contexts, with loads of geographical range, and current bike knowledge obtainable. Of the six, Boulder, Charlotte and Dallas constituted fundamental websites, the place one yr of knowledge (2019) was used for modeling. Portland, Bend, and Eugene in Oregon had been thought of enhanced websites, the place three years of knowledge (2017–2019) had been used for mannequin estimation.

The workforce selected three comparatively new knowledge sources: Strava, Streetlight Knowledge, and GPS knowledge from bike share programs within the case research cities. After amassing demographic, community, bike depend and rising knowledge from the brand new sources for every of the cities, they developed three units of fashions:

  1. One with pooled knowledge from all six cities,
  2. one other with simply the pooled knowledge from the three Oregon cities,
  3. and at last a set of city-specific fashions.





The researchers then utilized the outcomes to every of the six research websites. The town-specific fashions usually carried out one of the best, displaying essentially the most accuracy in predicting bicycle volumes. The scripts used to run the fashions will quickly be printed to GitHub, and a hyperlink shall be posted on the undertaking web page for anybody curious about accessing the fashions.

Normally, the assorted knowledge sources seemed to be complementary to at least one one other; that’s, including any two knowledge sources collectively tended to outperform every knowledge supply by itself. Including much more knowledge ought to proceed to refine accuracy. The findings from this research point out that reasonably than changing standard bike knowledge sources and depend applications, large knowledge sources like Strava and StreetLight truly make the previous “small” knowledge much more necessary.

“We’ll want extra ground-truth counts for low-volume websites to seize the number of areas, and that may make extra sturdy fashions,” stated Kate Hyun of UTA.

Higher Fashions Present Extra Correct Efficiency Measures For Transportation Businesses

Josh Roll, Analysis Analyst & Knowledge Scientist on the Oregon Division of Transportation, served because the chair for the undertaking’s technical advisory committee. He believes the result of this analysis might assist transportation businesses get a greater deal with on how many individuals are biking of their communities.

“At ODOT we simply adopted “Bicycle Miles Traveled” as a brand new key efficiency measure, and we’d like a option to measure it, so this undertaking very a lot helps to fill the hole on how we’ll do this. This analysis used cutting-edge knowledge fusion strategies that would lay the groundwork for a way transportation businesses like ODOT monitor bicycle exercise throughout the system,” Roll stated.

For transportation businesses wishing to assist energetic journey to satisfy varied sustainability, public well being, and climate-related targets, shortly having correct knowledge for all the community can be an enormous leap in the correct route.

Sturdy, organized, and accessible depend applications shall be important to get essentially the most out of rising knowledge sources. The extra good, vetted knowledge can be found, the higher fashions based mostly on rising sources will carry out, so professionals managing bicycle depend applications ought to concentrate on making knowledge uniform and extensively usable.

“In an effort to combine all of those disparate knowledge sources—automated and guide counts, opt-in apps like Strava, passively collected background knowledge like Streetlight, and GPS-enabled bike sharing programs—into one coherent system, knowledge professionals ought to manage their knowledge to finest make the most of these new knowledge fusion prospects. This implies ensuring nonmotorized knowledge are correct, constant, and helpful,” stated Sirisha Kothuri, lead researcher on the undertaking.


Working to enhance bicycle crossings at unsignalized intersections


Extra info:
ppms.trec.pdx.edu/media/projec … _Bicycle_Volumes.pdf

Supplied by
Portland State College

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Nationwide research provides new bike depend fashions: Combining conventional counters and rising GPS knowledge (2022, July 15)
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