Bike Lanes are Good for Business

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By Charles Pekow — Two arguments you often hear against adding bike lanes or parking: they will hurt business and create traffic problems by taking away parking and travel lanes.

Now, cycling advocates can refute the claims, which have garnered plenty of attention. Researchers at the University of California, Davis did a meta-analysis of twenty-three studies in the United States and Canada examining the arguments.

Their conclusion: “Taken together, the studies indicate that creating or improving active travel facilities generally has positive or non-significant economic impacts on retail and food service businesses abutting or within a short distance of the facilities….” The sole exception: businesses that cater especially to autos.

The results were practically the same whether or not travel lanes or auto parking was reduced to make room for cycles.

The study, “Economic Impacts on Local Businesses of Investments in Bicycle and Pedestrian Infrastructure: a Review of the Evidence” appeared in the April Transport Reviews.

 

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