New Report Released about Determinants of Cycling in Washington, DC

The Mid Atlantic University Transportation Center (MAUTC) just released our recent report about determinants of cycling in the Washington, DC region. Follow this link to access the report or click here.

Here is the abstract with key findings:

This report analyzes cycling trends, policies, and commuting in the Washington, DC area. The analysis is divided into two parts. Part 1 focuses on cycling trends and policies in Washington (DC), Alexandria (VA), Arlington County (VA), Fairfax County (VA), Montgomery County (MD), and Prince George’s County (MD) during the last two decades. The goal is to gain a better understanding of variability and determinants of cycling within one metropolitan area. Data on bicycling trends and policies originate from official published documents, unpublished reports, site visits, and in-person, email, or phone interviews with transport planners and experts from municipal governments, regional planning agencies, and bicycling advocacy organizations. Part 2 of the report presents a multiple regression analysis of determinants of bike commuting based on data of 5,091 workers from the Washington, DC region. A series of logit, probit, and relogit (Rare Events Logistic) regressions focus on the role of bike parking, cyclist showers, and free car parking at work as determinants of the decision to cycle to work, while controlling for socio-economic factors, population density, trip distance, bikeway supply, and season of the year.

The report finds that cycling levels and cyclist safety have been increasing in the Washington region. However, cycling appears to be spatially concentrated in neighborhoods of the urban core jurisdictions. Compared to national averages for urbanized areas a larger share of bicycle trips in Washington, DC is commute or work related (41% vs. 17%). Area cyclists are predominantly male, between 25 and 40 years old, white, and from higher income groups. Bicycle planning in the region has its roots in the 1970s, experienced a hiatus in the 1980s, but has witnessed a ‘renaissance’ since the (late) 1990s. Initially bicycle policies focused on the provision of off-street paths—often shared with pedestrians. Since the late 1990s, jurisdictions have greatly expanded their on-street bicycle lanes and implemented other innovative programs. The regression analysis appears to support the expansion of the bike network, since bikeway supply is a significant predictor of bike commuting. Moreover, bike parking and cyclist showers at work are associated with more bike commuting. Free car parking at work is associated with less bike commuting; and transit commuter benefits were not a significant predictor of bike commuting.

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