Transport data

Why we publish council transport data.

Council collects and uses transport data to inform decisions and to measure our performance against the targets we set in policies such as the Moreland Integrated Transport Strategy (PDF 25Mb).

Community groups, data science students, traffic engineers and state government organisations such the Victorian Government Department of Transport (including the former VicRoads) may find the observations collected by Council surveys useful. Merri-bek Council hopes that by sharing transport data we can:

  • Promote an evidence-based community debate when discussing transport issues.
  • Encourage a discussion about how we want to get around Merri-bek in the future (and what we'll need to do reach that future) by measuring changes in travel patterns over time.
  • Support creative reuse of data collected by a public organisation for to benefit the public.


Types of data

Automated bicycle counters

Bicycle counters maintained by Merri-bek Council 

Moreland Council in partnership with VeloCycles operate an automated bicycle counter on Capital City Trail near Nicholson Street, Fitzroy North.  This counter was installed on 15 October 2013 and counts the number bike riders travelling in each direction every 15 minutes.

The counter has a web page (requires flash) that displays the number of bike riders who used the path yesterday, the number of riders so far this year and graphs showing how path use has changed over time.  Historic, manually generated reports in a .csv format are available below.

Data is also available in .xls format:


Automated bicycle counters maintained by Department of Transport.

The Victorian Government Department of Transport operate automated bike counters on:

  • the Merri Creek Trail between Brunswick Velodrome and Merri-bek Road / Arthurton Road, Brunswick East
  • the Upfield Shared Path south of Park Street in Brunswick. 

Observations from these counters are published at


Human observation bicycle and pedestrian counts

Morning commuter peak (7am - 9am) bicycle counts

In early March each year Merri-bek Council typically conducts a count of people riding to work as a part of the 'Super Tuesday' bicycle survey organised by Bicycle Network. 


Bike counts on Sydney Road and Upfield Shared Path

Once every two years Merri-bek Council conducts a 12 hour count of bicycle riders using Sydney Road and a 24 hour count of both bicycle riders and walkers using the Upfield Shared path. This count is usually completed in Autumn, after school and university resume, but before the end of Daylight savings.

The 2019 survey occurred while Upfield shared path was affected by closures and detours near Jewel Railway Station.

Motor Vehicle Speed and Volume Surveys

Each year Merri-bek Council conducts around 150 motor vehicle speed and volume surveys using tube counters. These counters measure motor vehicle type, speed and direction of travel for one week.  Surveys record daily and peak hour traffic volumes and the 85th percentile speed of the road. 

Traffic engineers pay particular attention to the 85th percentile speed. (85% of the motor vehicles using the surveyed road travel at the 85th percentile speed or lower). Most people drive responsibly matching their speed to road conditions. Changes to the speed limit and road design are considered an effective influence for around 85% of drivers. Unfortunately there will always be a minority who do not drive to conditions. Additional enforcement effort is considered the appropriate tool to change driving behaviour of the 15% of motorists who drive fast regardless of conditions.

Tube counters only measure motor vehicle movements.  Unfortunately, a sensor robust enough to record a truck passing and is not sensitive enough to record a bike - and a sensor that can detect a bike would be destroyed by a truck passing.

 A note about formatting

Transport data is published 'as is'.  Where possible Council will attempt to provide some context information, but users are responsible for file format conversion, data cleaning and generating summary statistics from these observations.   

Councils across Australia are collaborating to develop common data formats to report the types of information commonly collected by Local Government. For more information about this effort and to get involved visit