What Drives Success in Public Bikeshare Programs?

Research Team: Michael Hyland (lead) and Jean-Daniel Saphores

University: UC Irvine

Problem Statement: Transportation is the second highest household expense in the United States behind housing. Purchasing, insuring, maintaining, parking, and fueling a personal vehicle is expensive. Yet, in many places in California, the personal vehicle is the only reasonably efficient travel option available to families to reach jobs, go shopping, access healthcare, and/or engage in social activities. At the same time, transportation is responsible for over 40% of greenhouse gas emissions in California. Bikeshare programs can reduce both the costs of travel and the environmental impacts on the existing transportation system, which is why Caltrans is strategically trying to triple the mode share of bicycling. An affordable on-demand public bikesharing system could provide an alternative for short trips that is both more efficient and environmentally sustainable than a personal vehicle (or a ridesourcing / ride- hailing service).

Project Description: This project will use meta-analysis and statistical techniques combined with phone interviews of key stakeholders to (i) determine the ingredients for and obstacles to success in existing public bikeshare systems accounting for various factors related to land-use, infrastructure, socio- demographics, and the weather, and (ii) Identify the infrastructure investments and policy changes that would be the most beneficial to the success of public bikeshare systems across California.

Status: In Progress

Budget: $79,991

Project Partner(s): California Department of Transportation