What happens if you are attempting to do a turning movement count at an intersection and one of the roads is suddenly shut down because there is a police standoff one block away? This may be a bit of an odd question, but this situation happened to us here at Traffic Data Inc. just recently. Here’s how we handled an unplanned interruption in our traffic counts.
While much of a traffic engineer’s focus is on counting vehicle traffic, pedestrians and cyclists. But on occasion, we have the opportunity to do some truly interesting counts. This is a case study on how video traffic counting technology can be used for snowmobile trail crossings.
As traffic engineers, much of our work is focused on vehicle volumes and patterns. But pedestrian and bike patterns can be just important in some settings. One way to do a pedestrian/bike count is to position someone at an intersection to do a physical count. However, a faster and more cost effective way is to leverage video technology.
Our data collection firm, Traffic Data Inc., is now on the market for a new traffic counting vehicle. We wanted to share with you some of the features we’re looking for. These are things that we’ve noticed in other vehicles and simple best practices from our experience.
I fondly remember being “stuck” at a fraternity party during the Halloween Blizzard of 1991 when Minneapolis was hit with 28 inches of snow on October 31st. Now that I’m in the business of traffic counting, October 31st also looms in my mind as a deadline of sorts. We push to get our tube counts done before then to avoid the impending snowplows.
About ten years ago, we sat on the side of Hiawatha Avenue in Minneapolis after the Light Rail Transit line was opened adjacent to it in Minneapolis, and counted the number of people in each car as they passed by as well as the number of bicyclists/pedestrians on the adjacent. Metro Transit had data on how many riders were on the light rail trains and used this data combined with the information...