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New app maps your bike ride, helps urban planners

Posting in Cities

You won't find Atlanta on any lists ranking bikeable cities in the United States. At least not yet.

Georgia Tech University developed a new app that allows cyclists to collect data from a bike ride which can be used by the city of Atlanta's transportation planners to make smarter decisions on future bicycle infrastructure.

The app, Cycle Atlanta, uses GPS on your smartphone to track your bike trips. At the end of a ride, cyclists can see a map of the ride, how long it took them, and their average speed. The (confidential) data is then made available to Atlanta's transportation planners. A cyclist can also make comments about the trip (potholes, dangerous intersections, etc.). After enough rides, the city will be equipped with important data, like which routes are most popular and which bicyclists avoid, to make strategic bicycle infrastructure decisions.

"One of the main reasons people don't frequently cycle is a lack of safe infrastructure – dedicated bicycle routes, roads with bicycle lanes and other designated bicycle facilities," said Christopher Le Dantec, an assistant professor at Georgia Tech, in a statement. "The city has a desire to put proper infrastructure in place but needs better information from citizens about where they currently ride and would like to cycle."

Download the app here.

Photo courtesy of Georgia Tech University

— By on October 15, 2012, 3:20 AM PST

Tyler Falk

Contributing Editor

Tyler Falk freelance journalist based in Washington, D.C. Previously, he was with Smart Growth America and Grist. He holds a degree from Goshen College. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure