StreetLight Data adds bicycle and pedestrian metrics to its platform


Big data analytics firm for the transportation industry, StreetLight Data Inc. has added a new tier of detailed bicycle and pedestrian metrics to its InSight cloud-based software platform.

Since 2011, StreetLight Data has been pioneering on-demand vehicular traffic metrics for city planners that have long struggled with obtaining timely and accurate data at scale. Measuring bicycle and pedestrian traffic has become an overwhelming challenge for many communities that cannot afford to install and maintain a sufficient number of expensive counters to help measure and manage how multiple modes interact. The new Bike and Pedestrian Essentials tier of the company’s InSight software platform offers a comprehensive set of active transportation metrics, delivered in response to the needs of transportation planners and new mobility companies for empirical data to enable improved bike, scooter and pedestrian infrastructure.

The new Bike and Pedestrian Essentials offers complete, stand-alone access to key industry metrics for these modes, previously offered only as part of StreetLight’s premium Multimode software tier. Available for select zones or an entire region, the new tier provides communities tools for a more nuanced understanding of active transportation usage, safety, and data-derived priorities for bike lanes and other infrastructure. By applying its proprietary, machine-learning algorithms to over four trillion spatial data points over time, the company effectively provides a network of ‘virtual’ sensors that cover nearly every road and bike lane across any city in North America. The result is a more comprehensive look at bicycle travel than traditional traffic and bike count programs deliver, while maintaining sensor accuracy.

Currently powering more than 3,000 global projects every month, StreetLight measures diverse travel patterns and makes them available on-demand via the world’s first SaaS (software-as-a-service) platform for mobility. While addressing safety is a critical application, the Bike and Pedestrian Essentials tier on the InSight platform provides metrics that are used by transportation professionals to solve a vast array of mobility challenges, including:

  • Origin Destination – Trip volume between and within zones to identify demand;
  • Select Link – Route alternatives to measure success of current infrastructure;
  • Trip Attributes – Travel distance, time, speed to address first- and last-mile connections;
  • Traveler Attributes – Demographics and inferred trip purpose to ensure access to affordable options.

“Based in San Francisco, one of America’s most active cities, our move to pioneer active transportation metrics was a no-brainer,” said Sean Co, director of special projects at StreetLight Data. “For a city with 1,200 miles of roadway, having 75 bicycle sensors offers only a partial perspective on bike traffic. Our ‘virtual’ sensors cover nearly every city block. Without our bike activity metrics, cities have to rely largely on collision statistics to identify locations prone to bike crashes. Overlaying collision counts with our bicycle activity index across an entire city allows transportation agencies to pinpoint bike collision rates and quickly prioritize where to act first. From 2015 to 2018, San Francisco saw over 1,400 bike injuries and fatal collisions. However, as our bike activity overlay reveals, transportation agency safety initiatives can be focused on a subset of roads with the highest exposure, where both bike traffic and collision rates are highest”.

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Adam joined the company in 1994, and has been News Editor of TTT since 2009. In his other role as Circulation Manager, he helped create the original Traffic Technology International distribution list 23 years ago, and has been working on it ever since. Outside of work, he is a keen fisherman, runs a drumming band, and plays an ancient version of cricket.