Martha’s Vineyard’s ‘busiest hour’ in 2022

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The locations of the traffic counters on-Island. — Martha's Vineyard Commission

An ongoing traffic study by the Martha’s Vineyard Commission reveals that Friday, August 12, between the hours of 1 and 2 pm, was the busiest hour of vehicle traffic on Martha’s Vineyard last year. 

Data shows that during that time span, 1,517 cars passed by the Martha’s Vineyard Refuse District on West Tisbury Road — an average of one car every 2.37 seconds. 

The study uses data collected from six traffic counters that had been installed throughout the Island at the end of 2019, MVC special projects planner Dan Doyle told commissioners at their meeting Thursday. 

According to the study, which looks into the annual average daily traffic (AADT) on-Island, Doyle said traffic has been fairly consistent in the past two years, with 2022 experiencing “a little bit of an uptick” from 2021. 

Unsurprisingly, February clocks in among the quietest months for vehicular traffic, with average volumes varying month to month by location.

2020 produced the first full year’s worth of data, Doyle said, which “is not the best baseline year,” given the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Particularly traffic averages collected in March and April of that year, which slowed substantially, distorted the data somewhat. 

But Doyle says 2021 and 2022 offer a glimpse into the traffic trends of the Island. 

After the initial influx of residents during the pandemic, triggering the Island’s population to increase — as well as its traffic — Doyle says “the dust has settled somewhat,” offering a more reliable data set. 

13 COMMENTS

  1. Ok now that we know the intersection of County Road and the West Tisbury road is one of the busiest roads on the island when is the MVC traffic planner going to work on getting this road way fixed? Those that drive on the island new this was a problem long before we had the numbers. Fix the entrance to the airport and get us another roundabout at the County and WT intersection. Maybe something is being done so lets have an update on this traffic problem we all know exists here. Most of all it can be fixed with planning.

    • Bob– again, we are in full agreement– A roundabout at the intersection of Barnes and West Tis road in a unqualified no brainer. Airport also.
      Thanks for pointing it out.

  2. This is how the commission is going to justify their ever increasing budget? By telling us there’s more cars on the island then there were 5 years ago?

    • If only better people were on the Commission.
      Do you know anyone who will step up and give the Island the leadership in needs?

  3. In the Midwest we have good roads, the winters are so rough on them with all the salt and plow blades, we have to put down high quality roadways with the best materials… and, we tax the public for them… people are ok with it due to a lack of potholes and quick repairs if there is a bad patch, anywhere… I would say, for Martha’s vinyard it’s the same need… put a tax at the ferry for road maintenance, and only spend it on that… more cars on Martha’s vinyard is more dollars input to the local economy… you want to maximize the seasonal visitors, and have the fun they experience during their visit to be safe, and orderly…adding round-snouts is good, a radio or texting program that tells of traffic congestion times and optional routes is another way to reroute traffic during peak hours??… best wishes, john kruschke—

  4. We are summer residents in Edgartown and do our very best to avoid Barnes Road and the WT intersection – going to the airport is a nightmare if it is after about 2 pm. The round about at the other end of Barnes has worked out beautifully — we absolutely need that done at Barnes/WT.

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