Hey Bike-share Fans!
Bike-sharing certainly has had an impact on urban cycling. Anyone living in a city with a medium to large bike-sharing program could tell you more people are cycling now than before. But just how much is this impact? We need to have a better understanding of this.
Cities gauge cycling by measuring cycle "mode share" or "mode split". This is a percentage of all transport trips which are made by cycles. Some cities already have calculated this since bike-sharing has been set loose in their jurisdiction. Barcelona measured its cycle mode share in 2005 (before bike-sharing) and in 2007 (after Bicing launched) to find cycle mode share jumped from 0.75% to 1.76% (Source: Romero 2008). In Paris, cycle mode share increased from about 1% in 2001 to 2.5% in post-launch 2007 (Nadal 2007, City of Paris 2007). Based on these two cities, it appears that bike-sharing has the affect of raising bike mode share between 1.0 - 1.5% in cities with pre-existing low cycling use. While this may sound small, these percentages equate to tens of thousands more cycle trips each day.
With over 100 bike-sharing programs internationally, there's data out there now which tells more about the story of bike-sharing in cities. The Bike-sharing Blog is asking for your help: Are you familiar with a report that shares your city's cycle mode share data before and after a bike-sharing program was implemented? Perhaps your local cycle planner has this information in a report? Please share links to your city's data in the comment section below so we can all benefit from it. The more proof bike-sharing is benefiting our cities, the easier it will be to launch programs in cities currently lacking a program as well as expand existing programs.
image credit: psdGraphics