Economic and Traffic Impacts Following the Installation of New Bicycle Facilities: A Denver Case Study
Date of Award
Andrew R. Goetz, Ph.D.
Bicycle, Denver, Sustainability, Transit, Transportation, Urban
America is currently experiencing a unique departure from the historical vehicle miles traveled (VMT) trend, often referred to as "peak travel." Decreasing VMT numbers suggest that the US is currently experiencing an unprecedented change in the way individuals utilize transportation systems. The following research calls on a need to understand the importance of improving alternative transportation infrastructure, namely cycling facilities, and how this impacts local businesses and their communities. This research informs the overarching question, "What are the economic and traffic impacts of cycling facilities?" A mixed methods analysis of retail sales tax, traffic count, and RTD transit access data helped to uncover the economic and traffic impacts following the installation of improved cycling facilities in Denver, CO. In an effort to inform future transportation projects, the findings suggest how the street improvements influenced the local sales tax character of the corridor and what impact they had on bicycle traffic. This research highlights the positive economic impacts and increased levels of bicycle traffic following the installation of new bicycle facilities. There are four broad conclusions within this research. First, Denver exhibits untapped potential for increasing the bicycle mode share, especially when bike trips are combined with transit trips. Second, bicycle facilities are correlated with statistically significant positive economic impacts for local businesses and do not have negative impacts. Third, protected bike lanes (PBLs) improve overall safety for all users and encourage more "types" of bicyclists to use the facility. Lastly, PBLs increase overall bicycle traffic, while simultaneously decreasing the number of traffic violations and sidewalk riding counts. It represents a next step towards cultivating a method to provide an unbiased view of the direct economic impacts of cycling infrastructure improvements.
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Rijo, Stephen Antonio, "Economic and Traffic Impacts Following the Installation of New Bicycle Facilities: A Denver Case Study" (2015). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1399.
Received from ProQuest
Stephen Antonio Rijo
Geography, Transportation, Economics