Thousands of pedestrians and bikers used the Northwest Lancaster County River Trail over the past half of the year, according to the East Donegal Township Board of Supervisors.
At a meeting on Thursday, Feb. 1, Supervisor Thomas Jones reported to the board on findings from a people counter at the trail.
Township Manager Jeffrey Butler said the counter, which is buried underground just north of the pavilion, has a long-life battery inside it. He said it uses a Bluetooth-type of technology to read the motion of the people passing by.
According to the counter, 78,000 people headed north to Conoy from the trail between July 1, 2017, and Dec. 31, 2017.
While Jones acknowledged half of the traffic may be the same people returning, the board was still impressed with the large amount.
The 78,000 figure does not count the people who walked the trail in the other direction, toward Columbia.
“Just an interesting point — Jan. 1 to Jan. 13 of this year, which I think was one of the coldest on record — 2,700 people on the trail in January, so it’s seen a lot of traffic,” Jones said.
Jones suggested installing a people counter east of the pavilion to track pedestrians headed in the opposite direction from the current counter.
Butler said the Advisory Committee gave the counter to the township, and he was not sure if the committee had any additional counters.
Also at the meeting, the supervisors approved the hiring of a new finance officer.
Jodi Diaz, who has an accounting and bookkeeping background, will be paid $58,500 per year.
The Board of Supervisors will hold its next meeting at 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 1, at the East Donegal Township Municipal Building, at 190 Rock Point Road, Marietta.