Eyes on the Street: UCLA Counts Bikes with Modern, Automated Counter

Image from Friday’s opening celebration via ##http://www.transportation.ucla.edu/portal/comm/bikecounter/index.html##UCLA Transportation##.

Last Friday, UCLA celebrated the placement of a digital bike counter on its campus on  Strathmore Place, west of Westwood Plaza and just east of the Strathmore Bridge. The placement is something of a historic moment. While popular in major bicycling cities throughout the world, it is only the second of its kind in California, the first in Southern California and the first of its kind on any college campus.

“We’re very excited about the counter’s benchmarking possibilities,” said UCLA Planning, Policy & Traffic Systems Senior Associate Director David Karwaski. “But more importantly, we see the counter as a gateway sign to our campus cyclists, letting them know they are welcomed and that they are an integral part of a larger UCLA bicycling community.”

Bicycling has become an increasingly popular commute option at UCLA, despite what you may hear at a Westwood South of Santa Monica Homeowner’s Association meeting. With the installation of the Strathmore Bike Counter, UCLA  will count in real-time the number of cyclists who enter the campus through the Gayley Avenue/ Strathmore Place corridor.  It visibly counts daily bike riders through a digital numeric display and also indicates the annual number of cyclists with a scaled barometer.

“As more and more Bruins embrace a healthy lifestyle and with biking to campus doubling since 2006, the bike counter is a way to celebrate those who have chosen a healthy alternative for their daily commute and to build a greater sense of community among Bruin cyclists,” writes UCLA Events & Transportation Executive Director Renée Fortier. 

The Strathmore Bike Counter was made possible through a  grant from ASUCLA’s The Green Initiative Fund.

  • I’m really glad that this came to fruition and congratulations! Renee came up the idea of bringing a bike counter to UCLA about three or four years ago, back when I was still on staff at UCLA. Initially, I was a bit skeptical. It seemed expensive, and I wondered if the resources could be expended on other things. I also worried that TGIF would never fund this. But that was then. UCLA students have demonstrated overwhelmingly their support for the bicycle library, which was also funded through earlier rounds of TGIF funding, a visible success for this student-funded initiative.

    This bike counter came at the right time. It’s very much in line with what I’ve written earlier about how bike lanes, sharrows, and cycle tracks can serve as tipping points to “unlock” additional segments of people who ride a bike. There’s something validating about this, and that’s really terrific.

  • ubrayj02

    They should have spent that bike counter money registering students, faculty, and staff to vote and threatening Koretz in his reelection bid that no bike lanes on Westwood mean no votes from UCLA.


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