Since being commissioned on Ride2Work Day in 2013 by ourselves and our good friends at City of Moreland, our bicycle counter (located on the Capital City Trail just near Nicholson Street) has steadily been recording an increase in daily riders, but even we weren’t prepared for this one!
After nearly reaching one million several years, and then finally eclipsing it in 2017, we blitzed it this year with the one-millionth rider going past our counter on Wednesday 14th November around our closing time of 6:30pm. That’s around a month earlier than 2017.
This upward trend was reflected in the final year’s total of 1,131,435 – an increase of almost 9% on last year.
Whilst most months’ totals hovered around the same as last year (particularly those with unfavourable weather) February, May, September and October all recorded significant increases on their numbers from 2017. Weekend numbers have increased too, but in 2018 just as in previous years, the Mon-Fri commuting riders make up the big daily numbers.
There are many factors which could help attribute to these increases. Melbourne’s ever-increasing difficulty of being able to drive during peak hour, and congestion on public transport routes are both factors in many people choosing to ride. And, of course, more people riding also means people who hadn’t thought about it before may consider taking it up.
If my friend/relative/neighbour can ride a bike for transport, why can’t I?
(Sociologists call that ‘normalisation’.) Melbourne’s inner-North certainly aids in building the perception of bicycles being many people’s transport of choice. And, of course, there’s also plenty of opportunity for some fun rides with the family of weekends.
We’ll continue to monitor our counter around the first of every month and keep you updated with how things are progressing throughout the year. Let’s see when the next record will topple!