Tackling Raleigh’s toughest hills on a bike
If you’re walking or biking on popular streets or greenways in Wake County, there’s a chance you’re being counted.
Pedestrian and bicycle counters have been installed along several streets and greenways in Raleigh, Cary, Wake Forest and Apex by the N.C. Department of Transportation.
The datafeeds into the state’s larger bicycle and pedestrian programs, said John Vine-Hodge, a DOT planning program manager. It helps the department see which greenways and streets have a large number of cyclists and bikers and is used to benchmark bicycle and pedestrian crashes.
Similar counters are already in Charlotte, Greensboro, Chapel Hill and Winston-Salem, and DOT wants to expand the program to the entire state, he said. The data is shared annually with local governments and regional transit groups to help people who bike and walk get around more safely.
For instance, Raleigh can use the data as a benchmark to see if pedestrian or bicycle crashes are happening more frequently on certain roads, said Eric Lamb, Raleigh’s transportation planning manager.
“Say we find there are five crashes on a particular street in a given year,” he said. “The relative safety is going to be different if there are only five bicycle trips a day versus 500 bicycle trips a day.”
People walking or riding a bicycle are picked up by the counter as they go by but identifiable features aren’t tracked or counted. If someone turns back around and walks past it again, it’s counted as a second person.
“It just picks up what goes by,” Vine-Hodge said. “If a deer went by, it would be counted and it wouldn’t know it’s a deer.”
Here’s where the Wake County counters are:
- Beaver Creek Greenway at Pendula Path and Big Leaf Loop, Apex,
- Olive Chapel Road at Ashley Downs Drive and I-540 Bridge, Apex,
- Salem Street at Saunders Street and Chatham Street, Apex,
- Black Creek Trail at High House Road and Buckland Mills Court, Cary,
- Louis Stephens Drive near Green hope Elementary School, Cary,
- New Hope Church Road near American Tobacco Trail trailhead, Cary,
- Cameron Street near Oberlin Road and Daniels Street, Raleigh,
- Hargett Street near Monie Lane and Swain Street, Raleigh,
- Hillsborough Street near Hawthorne Road and Forest Road, Raleigh,
- Neuse River Greenway near Falls of Neuse Road, Raleigh,
- Ridge Road near Birnamwood Road and Lewis Farm, Raleigh,
- Rocky Branch Trail near Dorthea Drive and Cabarrus Street, Raleigh,
- Crabtreet Creek Greenway near North Hills Drive and Generation Drive, Raleigh,
- Main Street near Dunn Avenue and East Holding Avenue, Wake Forest,