Innovative cycling data

Crowd-sourced Bicycle Route Desirability

Collaboration with Dr. Chris LeDantec and UTIL students Alex Poznanski and Aditi Misra
Sponsored by the GVU Center and the City of Atlanta

50% of all trips are 3 miles or less, yet only 1.8% of those trips are biked [1].  Meanwhile, 35.7% of US adults are obese [2] and the transportation sector accounts for 32% of US greenhouse gases [3].  One of the main reasons citizens do not use the healthier mode of cycling is due to a lack of safe infrastructure—dedicated bicycle routes, roads with bicycle lanes, and other designated bicycle facilities. 

The City of Atlanta has a desire to put proper cycling infrastructure in place but needs better information from citizens about where they currently and would like to cycle.  Therefore, the initial goal of the Crowd-sourced Bicycle Route Desirability project is to modify the open-source CycleTracks application (previously adopted in San Francisco, CA, and Austin, TX [4]) for use in Atlanta. 

CycleTracks tracks the existing routes of cyclists using their smart phones and allows comparison of these routes to the quickest path from origin to destination.  This allows us to begin to make appropriate infrastructure improvements to the most traveled routes in a study area by seeing logical paths that cyclists avoid.  A second phase of the project would develop applications allowing riders to express their desired bike routes even if they currently do not cycle because of lack of adequate facilities.