The City of Fort Collins has something called a “Community Performance Measurement Dashboard” which gives quarterly insights into how the City is doing in terms of achieving its seven key outcomes — Neighborhood Livability and Social Health, Culture and Recreation, Economic Health, Environmental Health, Safe Community, Transportation, and High Performing Government. The second quarter metrics were just recently posted. Here are some highlights.

Average Travel Speeds/Times on Arterial Streets

The City has a target of being able to travel one mile in 3 minutes or less.

The City has a target of being able to travel one mile in 3 minutes or less.

Traffic appears to be moving smoothly according to this metric which shows that traffic takes less than the 3 minute goal to travel one mile. So in the second quarter of this year, the City provided efficient travel according to the metrics on the site.

Cumulative Lane Miles of Roadway Pavement Improved

The goal to resurface city streets wasn’t met in Q2, however. This was due to $2 million being reallocated to focus on bringing sidewalk ramps into Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance. (There was a graph for this section, but it wasn’t particularly interesting.)

Transfort Fixed Route Passengers per Revenue Hour

The new FLEX service to Boulder and increased use of the Horn (bus route on CSU campus) had an affect.

The new FLEX service to Boulder and increased use of the Horn (bus route on CSU campus) had an affect.

Transfort service is measured in the number of passengers riding per revenue hour (which I assume means “While the buses were running”). The green line shows the industry standard — which means Fort Collins’ bus service is doing very well compared to what public bus services hope for nationwide. There’s no explanation on the page, however, about why the Fort Collins target starts bobbing up and down beginning in the first quarter of 2015. Perhaps expectations were set based on new services coming online?

Cumulative Transfort Fixed Route Ridership

This chart is cumulative by year, so it resets for each year. But looking at the overall trend, it's clear to see that ridership is increasing from year to year.

This chart is cumulative by year, so it resets for each year. But looking at the overall trend, it’s clear to see that ridership is increasing from year to year.

I found the analysis of this section particularly exciting.

Fixed Route ridership in the 2nd quarter surpassed the previous year’s 2nd quarter by 53%. Increases were seen across nearly every route and the highest increases were experienced on MAX (85%) and the HORN campus shuttle (73%).  2nd Quarter data is an indication that a new baseline of ridership has been achieved and those higher levels for every quarter hence may be expected. These ridership increases buck the trend of many U.S. transit agencies, which are experiencing decreases due in part to the low price of fuel.

Bus ridership is increasing and the metrics bear that out. Hopefully this increase will result in additional money being allocated to Transfort to improve service coverage. Greater frequency and Sunday service are two things residents keep asking for. There is a BFO offer on the table for Sunday service to be added. Stay tuned for more posts on that as the budget starts to make its way out to the public and back to City Council.

Bicycle and Pedestrian Metrics

Now all you bicyclists are probably curious to know what the metrics are for bike ridership in the city. And walkers are probably waiting with baited breath to learn about how Fort Collins is doing in terms of making the city more walkable. Well folks… Ya’ll are just gonna have to keep wondering. The four items I’ve mentioned here are ALL of the metrics that are used (at least on this Community Dashboard tool) for transportation performance metrics.

Go figure.

This is definitely an area that the City needs to look at more closely. Data has been and is being captured regarding how many bicyclists are on the streets and trails, how many streets within the City limits have no sidewalks or non-compliant sidewalks, etc. but none of that appears to be reflected here. It’s great that we’re capturing data and using these metrics to measure our performance as a city. But it’s not so great when we leave out two major forms of transportation in our transportation performance measurements. We can do better.

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