The Bicycle Facility Inventory (BFI) is the name of a continuing data development effort carried out by the MassDOT Office of Transportation Planning, to create a database of bicycle information usable in a geographic information system (GIS) for map production, reporting, and analysis.
While a fundamental purpose of the BFI is to accurately reflect existing accommodations for cyclists throughout the state, the BFI more broadly attempts to represent the whole pipeline of bicycle facility development, from visions, concrete proposals, funded design and construction projects to built facilities. Thus, the BFI is intended to be useful not only as an inventory but also as a planning tool, to show not only what is, but what may be.
The name purposely evokes the Road Inventory (RI), a core GIS-enabled data set maintained by MassDOT. Like the RI, the BFI requires continuous maintenance. It is intended to form the basis for development of other data by a broad range of users, who require continuity across update and release cycles and who need dependable keys to attach their own data to. A portion of the BFI consists of data maintained in the RI itself, and as public data, is subject to review and requests for corrections by other public agencies as well as the public at large.
This spatial data in the BFI contains existing bicycling facilities across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, as well as those accommodations that are in construction, design, or feasibility study phases and those that are merely proposed or envisioned. Both on-road facilities (bike lanes, routes, and tracks) and off-road facilities are included. Persistent identification of features across release cycles is supported through the use of a unique identifier. Other attached attributes include links to the Road Inventory, principal names from overlapping naming schemes, relationship to the Bay State Greenway system described in the Massachusetts Bicycle Transportation Plan, development status, physical characteristics, involved agencies and entities, usage statistics, and references.
Existing off-road bicycle facilities were digitized from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts 1:5000 color orthophoto imagery
and more recently from the USGS 30 cm color orthophoto imagery
. On-road accommodations were tied dynamically to the RI
so that improvements in that layer are automatically inherited. Attributes were collected from regional planning entities, municipalities, advocacy groups, the MassDOT Project Information System, project engineers, and other sources. The data layer is subject to continuing review.
The Office of Transportation Planning is constantly updating the BFI with the latest information available and strives to keep it as current as possible. Regional planning agencies, municipalities, and other agencies provide much of the updated information, but given the varied implementation paths that bicycle projects can follow, it is hard to ensure that all developments are included. Therefore, we encourage all users of the BFI to let us know incorrect or missing information. Please mail or e-mail your corrections to either your local regional planning agency, who will forward all changes to us, or directly to us by sending them to:
Office of Transportation Planning
10 Park Plaza, Suite 4150
Boston, MA 02116
Attention: Kevin Lopes
This data is current as of August 2013.
If you have access to GIS software, we encourage you to edit the downloaded BFI directly and send the modified BFI file back to us when you are done.
- If you have corrections to bicycle facilities already in the BFI, you should edit the existing GIS features, being especially careful to leave the BikeInventory_ID attribute unchanged. This enables us to use automated processes to discover exactly which facilities you modified and which attributes you updated (and relieves you of the task of highlighting them for us).
- If you know of facilities that we have omitted, please add them to the BFI. The BFI has a generous list of attributes, some of which may be inapplicable to your added facilities, and some of which may be unknown to you. We encourage you to fill in as many attribute values as you can, but we welcome new facility information even when it is incomplete. Even if you can only provide the shapes without any attributes, we may be able to make use of them.
- You may add comments to the downloaded BFI attribute called "Comments," if you would like to expand on any of the edits you make. If you feel that a facility should be deleted, any explanation you supply in this added attribute will be very helpful to us.
If you do not have access to, or skills using, GIS software, you can still submit updates to us. If you have corrections to make to existing facilities and can include the BikeInventory_ID number from the BFI, it will help us to find exactly the facility you are concerned with. If you cannot determine the BikeInventory_ID, try to supply unambiguous information to locate the facility. For example, specify street addresses, or websites providing detailed information and/or maps. Screen snapshots and your own drawings can also be helpful.