Establishing a bicycle and pedestrian count program will assist the NCDOT in evaluating facility usage over time, inform the project prioritization process and provide quantifiable evidence to support non-motorized facility inclusion through the Complete Streets process, improving municipal and regional planning for active travel. In turn, these data can be fed into tools to measure existing trends and model future increases in non-motorized trips at site-, corridor-, and regional-levels.
Phase I Pilot Project
The pilot phase of the NC Non-Motorized Volume Data Program was conducted in the geographic region which comprises NCDOT Divisions 7 and 9 to test a bicycle and pedestrian count protocol and replicate the methodology across the state. Continuous Count Stations to monitor bicyclist and pedestrian travel for Phase I went live in late 2014. Twelve Phase I stations were set up to monitor both bicycle and pedestrian traffic for a total of twenty-four continuous count data streams which are still active. These stations cover a mix of sites across different land uses, travel patterns, and volume groups. Detailed technical information can be found in the Phase I Final Report and Appendices.
The following programmatic elements were piloted (i.e. the Triad region) to select, install and provide quality data for the twelve stations:
- Agency Coordination
- Pre – Installation (Site Selection and Procurement)
- Equipment Set Up (Installation and Onboarding
- Equipment Validation
- Data Handling (QA/QC Checks, Cleaning, and Correcting)
- Equipment Maintenance
- Data Reporting
Phase II Expansion
Phase II of the project started in 2015 with expansion to NCDOT Divisions 4, 5, 8, and 10. Over 50 stations, or 110 data streams to monitor bicyclist traffic and pedestrian traffic are anticipated to be live by the end of 2016, making North Carolina’s NMVDP one of the largest non-motorized monitoring programs in the United States.
Additional Program Resources
Non-Motorized Site Selection Methods for Continuous and Short Duration Volume Counting
2016 NCAMPO Conference Presentation, Making People Count!
Installation of Continuous Count Stations
Maintaining and Contributing to NC’s Non-Motorized Volume Data Program
ITRE conducted a customized 1-Day workshop in bicycle and pedestrian counting prior to the kickoff of Phase II. This workshop was tailored to engage NCDOT Divisions 4, 5, 8 and 10 prior to initiating a regional site selection process. Staff from local and regional agencies within these Divisions were invited to attend the full day workshop. (6.5 PDH Credits)
The course was developed to give planners, engineers, and transportation professionals a solid foundation for maintaining and contributing to a non-motorized counting program being undertaken in North Carolina. The following topics were covered:
- Introduction to the NC Program
- Bicycle/Pedestrian Volume Data Fundamentals
- Non-Motorized Counting Equipment and Installation
- Data Needs and Uses
- Site Selection Methods
- Data Management and Reporting
The course included field visits to examine potential counting sites to inform participants on the basics of the site selection process.