Office of the Planning Commission

1755 Florida Street, 3rd Floor

Baton Rouge, LA 70802

(225) 389-3144

The League of American Bicyclist designated Baton Rouge as a Bicycle Friendly Community (Bronze Level) that made noticeable achievements in the following categories: engineering, education, encouragement, enforcement, and evaluation planning. The Bronze designation is just the beginning to an exciting future for bicycling in Baton Rouge.

Bikeability Index sample

After each Census block group is assessed and mapped with ancillary spatial data, a color gradient is applied to provide easy visual interpretation. The color green represents the most desirable and bikeable areas, and red represents the least desirable; giving the user a relative representation of the quality of the bicycle environment. The areas that are most desirable have a higher concentration of the core factors (bicycle facilities, street connectivity, and residential density).

In addition to the bikeability index, an extensive amount of spatial data is available, including bike-friendly amenities and destinations. BikeBR allows the user to select unique layers of interests specific to their needs. The user may easily “drag and drop” a point of origin and up to nine (9) destination points. BikeBR will also highlight the preferred route using the most bicycle-friendly route available in blue. We leveraged freely available technologies of Google Maps and Directions APIs to display all spatial data.

The City-Parish Planning Commission (CPPC) created an online interactive mapping tool called “BikeBR” to help determine which areas in Baton Rouge are easily accessible by bicycle. A “bikeability index” was developed to measure how safe, easy, and desirable it is to bike instead of driving on the City-Parish’s road network based on assessments of the physical and built environment. BikeBR is an interactive component of our Bicycle/Pedestrian Initiative’s primary goal to encourage you to bike on our streets.

1) Bicycle Facilities = measured as the ratio of sums in lengths(meters) of bike paths, trails, lanes and shared use to total land area per Census block group. Availability of bike facilities is usually the highest factor in promoting bike activities and is perceived as “safe” from motorists.

2) Street Connectivity = measured based on density of intersections identified from street centerline data per Census block group, and represented as a ratio of the number of true intersection (more than 3 leg segments) over land area (square meters). A higher density of intersections represents more potential for different route choices available at each intersection.

3) Residential Density = measured by dividing the number of household units by the sum of land area categorized a “residential” per Census block group. Higher residential density is usually synergistic to ease of travel on routes with lower speed limits and other traffic calming measures.

     bikeability legend

There have been several attempts to create models to assess bicycle compatibility with the built environment; and existing models rate bicycle routes for suitability, comfort, and safety. The variables were extracted from surveys that were prepared and distributed to the local bicycling community, of which we received 132 responses. Some of the neighborhood characteristics that were assessed in the survey were biking facilities (bike paths, bike lanes, bike racks); streets (number of lanes, crosswalks, width of streets, buffers, connectivity, street conditions); urban design (trees, lighting); and land use (community/office, public, industrial, residential). These variables were then classified to factors based on common variance. The top three (3) factors were bicycle facilities, street connectivity, and residential density.

About BikeBR