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Somerville's Busiest Intersection: Beacon Street and Somerville Avenue

The city counted rush-hour bicyclists and pedestrians this spring to discover the busiest intersections.

More bicyclists and pedestrians cross the intersection of Beacon Street and Somerville Avenue than any other intersection in the city, according to a city-sponsored count of commuters held this spring.

In the mornings, a total of 831 people per hour biked or walked across that intersection, near Porter Square; at night, 826 per hour did.

The city began counting the number of bicyclists and pedestrians in spring 2010 to figure out where to put bike lanes and other infrastructure—and to justify applications for state and federal funding for them.

Now, each fall and spring, the Somerville Bicycle Committee and the mayor’s office recruit volunteers to stand at 36 different places in the city during rush hours to count the number of cyclists and pedestrians who pass by.

Somerville's busiest intersections

Based on the recent spring count, Somerville's other busiest intersections for the morning commute were:

  • College Avenue and Winter Street, with 703 people per hour
  • Mossland Street and Somerville Avenue, with 546 people per hour
  • Community Path and Grove Street, with 534 people per hour
  • Somerville Avenue and Washington Street, with 508 people per hour  

At night, the order changed slightly:

  • College Avenue and Winter Street came, at 782 people per hour
  • Beacon Street and Washington Street, with 722
  • Somerville Avenue and Washington Street, at 611
  • Mossland Street and Somerville Avenue, at 495

Just pedestrians

Volunteers sighted the greatest number of pedestrians (in other words, not including cyclists) at College Avenue and Winter Street, with 633 people passing by per hour in the morning and 686 of them at night.

Just bikes

During the morning commute, 294 bicyclists rode past Beacon Street and Somerville Avenue every hour, making it the most traveled bicycle intersection by far. Even more cyclists—352 per hour—took that route at night.

Biking and walking to work

Some 7.8 percent of Somerville residents walk to work, and another 5.1 percent bicycle to get there, according to a 2005-2009 American Community Survey, which the city referenced in a recent presentation about these figures.

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