WATCH: Citizen-powered traffic counting project aims to empower people with data

WeCount, a project involving UCD and funded by the EU, has released a video highlighting its citizen-powered traffic counting programme that aims to empower people with data.

The video (below) outlines some of the experiences so-far and the issues people are facing.

WeCount notes on its Ireland page that it is in the process of expanding to Cork, Limerick, Ennis, Kilkenny, and Laois.

Francesco Pilla, an Associate Professor at UCD ‘s School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy, said: “What we are trying to do with WeCount is making the citizens a part of the solution. The idea is to go way beyond traffic counting and give them the insights to do something about the traffic in their area.”

Anne Bedos, a resident of Phibsborough and bicycle shop owner, said: “Phibsborough is a thriving community but everything is destroyed by having a freeway in the middle of it. It is basically a corridor that leads to the motorway up the road. So, we have a four-lane highway going through an urban village and we’ve been dealing with this problem for the last 30-40 years.

Colm Walsh, a resident of Rathmines, said: “School runs in this area in particular drives traffic and creates rat runs around this area.”

Ger O’Halloran, Castleknock who took part, said: “Data by itself is actually kind of useless, you have to do something with that data to make it compelling. The WeCount team held a workshop to show us how to construct a narrative with that data and hopefully, we can collaborate with our local government authority and co-design a sustainable active travel solution to our traffic problems.”

Jamie Cudden, lead of Smart City at Dublin City Council, said: “The WeCount project provides a huge opportunity to move away from anecdotal evidence about the problems in your neighbourhood relating to traffic congestion, air quality and noise for example. Actually empowering people to collect data that can be fed back to the city and politicians to start a proper, informed narrative about the issues they face.”

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