The number of people who choose to walk or ride bikes as their means of transportation is increasing here each year. By how much? Well, here’s an opportunity to find out – first hand. Volunteers are needed from Tuesday through Thursday, Sept. 25-27 to help count, as part of an annual effort to track progress on efforts to increase walking and bicycling and reduce dependence on single-occupancy vehicles.
You can volunteer for either a morning shift from 7-9 a.m. or an afternoon count from 4-6 p.m. on the date you choose. To sign up, contact Chris Beyer, with the City of Bellingham, at (360) 778-7827 or via firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is the tenth year Bellingham has been included as a “count city” in the Washington State Department of Transportation’s (WSDOT) initiative to quantify local and statewide walking and cycling numbers. WSDOT encourages communities to gather the information as part of a statewide effort to contribute to the National Documentation Project. Information from the Bellingham count supports local efforts and contributes to the statewide goal of reducing the number of vehicle miles driven and increasing bicycling and walking activity.
“We can tell that people in Bellingham love to walk and bike – and the counts reflect that,” says Chris Beyer, transportation technician. “Volunteers are so important for this count, because it helps determine where the City should invest in order to have the most impact for those who walk and bike.”
Data collected by the City is used by state agencies, as well as Bellingham, to estimate demand; measure the benefit of bicycle and pedestrian project investments; and improve policies, project designs and funding opportunities. Count data going back to 2008 is available online at: http://wsdot.wa.gov/data/tools/bikepedcounts/