LACONIA — Traffic during the 91st running of Motorcycle Week in June recorded at 10 locations by the Lakes Region Planning Commission was less than in 2014 and, on the last weekend of the rally — when rain fell or threatened — volume was the lightest of any year in the last 10 years at nine of the 10 locations.
The commission counted traffic (in both directions) between Saturday, June 13 and Sunday, June 21 at Funspot and the Weirs Channel Bridge on Rte. 3, White Oaks Road on Rte.-11B, the Chamber of Commerce and Margate Resort on Weirs Boulevard, Union Avenue, Parade Road, Rollercoaster Road, Watson Road and Lakeside Avenue.
The total average daily traffic volume at the 10 locations during the nine days of the rally was 117,208 vehicles in 2015, compared to 156,894 in 2014, a decrease of 25 percent. Traffic volume declined by between 8 percent and 46 percent at all 10 locations. The steepest decline in traffic volume was recorded at the Weirs Bridge, where the average daily volume of 16,042 vehicles was 46 percent below the 29,553 counted in 2014. From last year to this year, average daily traffic volumes also tumbled 34 percent at the Margate Resort, 33 percent on Rte. 11-B and 30 percent at Lakeside Avenue.
The traffic volume on the last weekend of this year's rally — Friday the 19th, Saturday the 20th and Sunday the 21st — was the lowest recorded at nine of 10 locations since 2006, with the tally at the Weirs Bridge topping the count in 2009 representing the lone exception. For the past several years the Weirs Bridge, which was closed to four-wheel traffic during the last four days of Motorcycle Week, has remained open to all vehicles as traffic volumes have diminished.
Traffic volume on the last three days of the rally this year was significantly below the historic average for the same three days between 2006 and 2014 on each of the three days and at all 10 locations. Compared to the historic average traffic volume was 25 percent lower at Funspot, 23 percent lower at the Weirs Bridge, 43 percent lower at Rte. 11-B, 27 percent lower at the Chamber of Commerce, 48 percent lower at the Margate Resort, 16 percent lower on Union Avenue, 18 percent lower on Parade Road, 28 percent lower on Rollercoaster Road, 25 percent lower on Watson Road and 34 percent lower on Lakeside Avenue.
The greatest volume at each location was posted during the 24 hours on Saturday the 13th, Friday the 19th and Saturday the 20th. The least traffic was counted on Monday the 15th and Tuesday the 16th, both of which were rainy days.
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