Disclaimer, I work for the City of Edina, and made these charts for a presentation to the Edina Transportation Commission.
This chart shows all counts taken this year and summed all the times in 15 minute intervals throughout the city. (Four of the 15 minute segments were summed together to make the chart cleaner and easier to read, thus every point represents the hour following that time, i.e. a point at 7:30 is 7:30-8:30 not 7:30-7:45)
You can see the whole presentation here, close to the 30 minute mark. OR you can stay tuned for more future Charts of the Day! (And the first two charts, Year-to-Year Comparisons and Daily Use by Location).
I think it tells us that most traffic of all kinds reflects most individuals’ need to get from one place to another, rather than merely go sight-seeing.
And expanding on that, I would take this into consideration as a reason that walking and biking should be considered transportation modes, not only fun things.
While I’d agree in general, of course the counterargument for the sake of caution is that if you look at when working folks have time to pursue recreation is before and after work which coincidently is the same times people are using for more transportation oriented uses. Really all a utilitarian focused use pattern may really suggest is that it isn’t desirable enough to be a midday recreation destination.
Given the 25% drop off from peak that occurs by 4:30 I’d be inclined to say that this is a mixed utilitarian/recreational pattern. Although that early afternoon peak might be associated with school activity you’ve described in earlier posts and thus actually be more utilitarian than one might suspect as well.
The moral of my rambling story is that it is as hard to determine use type in non-motorized monitoring as in vehicular.