This post is a continuation of our sharing of PeopleforBikes’ excellent research-based talking points to support bicycling. These are strong arguments for advocates of better bicycling.
Ask most people why they don’t bike and they’ll likely name safety as a key concern. A nationwide survey from the National Institute for Transportation and Communities found that a whopping two-thirds of U.S. residents would be more likely to bike if they were separated from cars by a physical barrier. There is so much research that shows people will bike if cities build good infrastructure. Overall, the average protected bike lane sees bike counts increase 75% in its first year alone.
Even small transformations to include protected bike infrastructure can have a huge impact.
- After buffered bike lanes were installed on Philadelphia’s Spruce and Pine streets, bike traffic increased 95%.
- There’s also evidence from Boston that protected bike lanes are better for bike share.
In Cambridge, Massachusetts, a 2022 upgrade brought a two-way protected bike lane to a section of Garden Street, where before there had only been sharrows and door-zone bike lanes. The changes transformed the entire neighborhood: Bike mode-share nearly quadrupled and increased by more than 2%. Even accounting for seasonal dips in ridership, bicycling in the area increased more than sixfold since the separated bike lanes were built.
Outside the United States, even better outcomes are occurring as a result of better infrastructure.
- In our northern neighbor, Canada, Montreal’s intersections with protected bike lanes saw 61% more bike traffic than comparable intersections with no bike infrastructure.
- Over in Europe, where biking is taken more seriously, bicycling in Sevilla, Spain, increased 435% when the city added 86 miles of dedicated bike lanes.
When you build it, they will come. Please join us in working to create more and better bicycling infrastructure by visiting our website here.