Sioux Falls Trail Use Surpasses One Million Counts in 2017

Trail user data collected in 2017 indicates that more than one million people were counted on the city’s bike trail system last year.

The Sioux Falls River Greenway offers pedestrians, cyclists, and other trail users nearly 30 miles of paved, off-street trail network without ever having to cross a city street. Six trail traffic counters were installed throughout the city’s main trail loop in 2015. The information provided from these traffic counters helps Sioux Falls Parks and Recreation staff better understand the traffic volumes and usage patterns of the trail system, as well as plan for future improvements based on that data.

In 2017, trail counters registered more than 1,003,000 counts on the trail system. The most popular section of trail was the Spencer Park section. Total counts at Spencer Park exceeded 268,000, with approximately 100,000 of them being cyclists. On average, approximately 9,000 cyclists and 8,000 pedestrians frequent the core section of the trail system each month. Of all the users on the trail system, 55 percent are cyclists, compared to 45 percent who are pedestrians. This is a shift from 2016, when cyclists were more prevalent at 64 percent with pedestrians at 36 percent.

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The most popular day for cyclists on the trail system was Sunday, July 23, 2017, with counts exceeding 1,400 cyclists at Pasley Park. The most popular day for pedestrians was Sunday, April 23, 2017, with more than 8,300 at Spencer Park.

“Information provided by the trail counters is extremely valuable,” says Mike Patten, Park Development Specialist. “The data helps us better plan and design future trail construction projects. By combining the information from the counters with a Level of Service calculation model, we properly design trails to meet the usage needs of our community.”

Out of the city’s 80 developed parks, 23 can be accessed by using the trail system. A new program, “80 in ’18,” challenges residents and visitors to explore all 80 parks in 2018 and to learn about all of the amenities the parks and recreation system offers. People who visit each month’s featured parks, or who explore all 80 parks in 2018, can enter to win prizes. More information, the entry form, and contest rules are available at www.siouxfalls.org/80in18.

 To receive updates on Parks and Recreation activities, visit www.facebook.com/siouxfallsparks or www.twitter.com/siouxfallsparks. More information, including a downloadable copy of the current Activities Guide, can be found at www.siouxfalls.org/parks or call 605-367-8222.