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Do bike lanes lead to more cyclists?

Investigating the effects of bike lanes in Minneapolis.

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A new paper published in the journal “Transportation Research Interdisciplinary Perspectives” by Billy Fields, Angie L. Cradock, Jessica L. Barrett, Tony Hull, and Steven J. Melly investigated the effects of bike lanes in Minneapolis.

Minneapolis built 76 miles of bike lanes — of all kinds — from 2007 to 2013.

Subsequent biking increases:

⬆️ 69% on protected bike lanes
⬆️ 26% on on-street bike lanes
⬆️ 10% on streets without bike lanes

This research adds to the growing body of scholarship examining the impact of bicycle facilities on use and provides important evidence supporting strategies to increasing physically active transportation in communities through targeted investments in key infrastructure through pilot programs. They found that improvements in bicycle facilities and the facility density of bicycle infrastructure around those locations are significantly associated with the number of bicyclists and an increased rate of bicycling over time.

The presence of bicycle facilities, particularly protected facilities like trails, and the density of these bicycle facilities impact their use. Policy makers and transportation planners looking to support increased bicycle ridership should consider investments that extend the local system of bicycle facilities and in particular, the density of protected bikeways in their bicycle transportation system.

 

See the paper here or download the PDF →

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