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Investigating the Influence of Dockless Electric Bike-share on Travel Behavior, Attitudes, Health, and Equity

  • Author(s): Fitch, Dillon, PhD
  • Mohiuddin, Hossain
  • Handy, Susan, PhD
  • et al.

Published Web Location

https://doi.org/10.7922/G2F18X0W
Abstract

Cities throughout the world have implemented bike-share systems as a strategy for expanding mobility options. While these have attracted substantial ridership, little is known about their influence on travel behavior more broadly. The aim of this study was to examine how shared electric bikes (e-bikes) and e-scooters influence individual travel attitudes and behavior, and related outcomes of physical activity and transportation equity. The study involved a survey in the greater Sacramento area of 1959 households before (Spring 2016) and 988 after (Spring 2019) the Summer 2018 implementation of the e-bike and e-scooterservice operated by Jump, Inc., as well as a direct survey of 703 e-bike users (in Fall 2018 & Spring 2019). Among householdrespondents, 3–13% reported having used the service. Of e-bike share trips, 35% substituted for car travel, 30% substituted for walking, and 5% were used to connect to transit. Before- and after-household surveys indicated a slight decrease in self-reported (not objectively measured) median vehicle miles traveled and slight positive shifts in attitudes towards bicycling. Service implementation was associated with minimal changes in health in terms of physical activity and numbers of collisions. The percentages of users by self-reported student status, race, and income suggest a fairly equitable service distribution by these parameters, but each survey under-represents racial minorities and people with low incomes. Therefore, the study is inconclusive about how this service impacts those most in need. Furthermore, aggregated socio-demographics of areas where trips started or ended did not correlate with, and therefore are not reliable indicators of, the socio-demographics of e-bike-share users. Thus, targeted surveying of racial minorities and people with low-incomes is needed to understand bike-share equity.

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