Bikes Are Faster for Most Short City Trips

Cycling West - Cycling Utah Magazine logoBy Charles Pekow – Urban transit frameworks need to include bicycling, the Paris-based International Transport Forum warns planners. “For trips of 15 minutes…the bicycle performs better in most cities” than autos or public transit in most instances, based on research in Europe. The study includes time spent getting to your vehicle and finding a parking space as part of transit time.

Bikesharing, e-bikes, and scooters also be figured into the equations, says Benchmarking Accessibility in Cities: Measuring the Impact of Proximity and Transport, the forum's recent guide for urban planners.

In the typical European city, you could take your choice of visiting any of 400,000 people with a bike ride of half an hour or less, says the guide (https://www.itf-oecd.org/sites/default/files/docs/accessibility-proximity-transport-performance.pdf).

The study didn't include walking. But it found that 97 percent of people in European cities live within a 15-minute bike ride of a park. The study assumed a steady ride of 16 km/hr (about 10 mph).

 

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