Over the last six weeks CAT has been counting bicycles at intersections in Allentown, Bethlehem and Easton. Not just counting cyclists, but keeping track of their behavior, too. Counts are conducted for a full day at each intersection, from 5:30AM to 11:30PM.
Teams of two observers, at least one League of American Bicyclists certified Cycling Instructor and one other person, who must be a graduate of Traffic Skills 101, work together. The counters keep track of the type of bike, the gender of the rider, whether or not a helmet is worn, if the cyclist stops for a red light, is traveling the correct direction on the street, stays off the sidewalk and has lights at night. Unusual behaviors, such as two people riding a bike built for one person are noted.
“One thing I observe,” says League Cycling Instructor Betty Kelly, who counts in Easton, ” all the women riders wear helmets.”
So far counts have been completed at 7th & Hamilton Streets, plus Hanover & Carlisle in Allentown; Linden & Elizabeth, New & the Greenway, 3rd & Hayes, plus Main & Broad Streets in Bethlehem; and Northampton & Larry Holmes Drive, the West side of Centre Square, plus 3rd & Larry Holmes Drive in Easton. Counts will be conducted under similar conditions at the same intersections in the Spring and Fall of 2012 through 2015 under a contract with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. The purpose of the bicycle counts and behavior surveys is to measure the impact of the bicycle education contract CAT has with PennDOT.