2020 - Year of the Bike

With 2020 behind us, it's time to take stock and look at the year that just passed.

Our lives changed a lot during 2020. I know mine has!

In August last year, I bought a bike for the very first time. I never thought I’d enjoy cycling on London’s busy road, but it’s actually been one of the highlights of the year for me. The cycle lanes make it so easy, and I love the sense of freedom it gives. I also used it to commute into the office when it briefly opened during the summer months - door to door it takes me the same amount of time as on the tube. Why didn’t I do this sooner?!

It turns out I wasn’t the only one who decided to get pedalling during 2020. In this week’s Makeover Monday, we look trail usage data from the Rails to Trails Conservancy in the US.

Here’s the original visualization from their spreadsheet:

What do I like about the current visual?

Where are my eyes drawn first?

What could be improved?

My Viz

Click here for interactive version

Tableau logo

I decided to look at bike count only for my viz as it’s what interests me the most.

I’ve included the absolute counts in the top line chart and decided to label the starting values and the peak during July to give a sense of scale.

Instead of using a legend to identify the lines as in the original, I’ve included the 2020 and 2019 labels directly on the chart, which makes finding the lines quicker.

The second chart is a year-over-year bar chart to emphasize the increase in bike usage we saw during 2020.

The Covid-19 period shaded in grey to highlight what’s causing the huge increases seen.