Driving 22% above norm

[14th May] Driving activity in NI continues to increase, with average levels for the week ending 12th May at 22% above the January 2020 baseline. As we continue to move away from restricted life we expect to see the levels of driving activity across NI rise further.

Within Belfast, movement by other modes is also increasing. Public transit use is increasing, so too is walking activity, now at 30% above baseline.

Continued activity in retail and recreation locations has been observed, in the first full week of data reporting since restrictions eased. Footfall was up 9% to 79% of baseline through these areas. As reported in our High Street footfall analysis, weather plays a significant role in the behaviour of audiences through retail and recreation areas, particularly where hospitality venues are restricted to outdoor trading only.

Poor weather forecasts have also likely impacted footfall through parks and beaches, with the average now at 99% of baseline.

Grocery and pharmacy locations maintain a solid share, with no change in the average weekly footfall, remaining 8% above baseline. Workplace footfall fell slightly too, ending the week on week analysis at 65% of the norm.

Traffic congestion in NI is also reflective of increased levels of driving activity with levels now similar to those seen in 2019. Weekends in particular are busy in Belfast, with a greater number of traffic jams over the last three weeks than the same period two years ago. While somewhat frustrating for drivers and passengers, high levels of congestion through the city is beneficial for advertisers with greater opportunity to connect with audiences using OOH.