More often than not, bicyclists and pedestrians are typically not included in traffic counts. According to the Federal Highway Administration, 20% of all trips in LA County are on foot or by bike while 39% of roadway fatalities are pedestrians or bicyclists. Yet, statewide investments in bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure remain less than 1% of the total transportation budget. Conducting bike/ped counts is critical for understanding our complete transportation system especially as investments in efficient, multi-beneficial and affordable modes of transit become more widely prioritized. Bike/ped counts help:
Many cities have recognized the value of biking and walking and have therefore conducted their own respective counts. However, due to varying count methods, the resulting data sets paint a regionally-skewed picture of biking/walking usage and behavior. In 2013, The Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) created and released a standard manual for counting bicyclists and pedestrians.
The SGV Bike Master Plan seeks to establish baseline bike/ped data in the San Gabriel Valley to compare across multiple-jurisdictions, especially partnering cities. El Monte and South El Monte were prioritized for counts due to recently approved and soon to be installed bikeways in each city. With 2013 rapidly coming to a close, project staff coordinated the first ever bike/ped counts in the San Gabriel Valley using the new count manual.
Thanks to the dedicated Day One family and BikeSGV volunteers, a total of 42 counts, at 16 locations over 6 days plus one day of training was completed. Once the data is cleaned, organized and analyzed a final report will be produced and shared.
Many thanks to the many volunteers that sacrificed their early mornings, early evenings and Saturday afternoons to sit street-side counting cyclists and pedestrians (even in the rain). Your support directly influences bike/ped improvements in our beloved SGV.
December 2013 has been a stellar month for the SGV Bike Master Plan. For the first time, residents within the cities of Monterey Park, San Gabriel, Baldwin Park El Monte and South El Monte were afforded opportunities to weigh-in on the development of the San Gabriel Valley Bicycle Master Plan through a series of workshops.
Unlike a traditional "sit, listen and watch a powerpoint presentation," the first round of jurisdiction-wide workshops were designed with the goal of optimizing community participation through active engagement. The workshop platform was divided into individual stations that were designed to capture specific feedback from participants. Each station had a different but related theme, which included:
To ensure that the San Gabriel Valley Bicycle Master Plan reflects the wants and needs of local residents and regional stakeholders the project has placed a big emphasis on community feedback. The first draft of the plan is expected to be released in April 2014. Until then, you can surely expect more workshops and opportunities to weigh-in on the future of a bike-able San Gabriel Valley.
If you haven't already, please take a moment to explore this website to learn more about the SGV Bike Master Plan. Also, don't forget to complete the General Bicycle Survey and subscribe to the project newsletter to be up-to-date on upcoming events, workshops, bike rides and more.