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40 CHAPTER SEVEN CONCLUSIONS There has been significant growth in the number of agencies have eliminated fees and permitting requirements for using offering bicycle services since the publication of TCRP Syn- other bicycle services. thesis of Transit Practice 4 in 1994. In addition, the types of bicycle and transit integration have continued to diversify as Bicycle and transit integration is viewed by many agen- transit agencies have pioneered new bicycle services. cies as a good tool for marketing and promoting good com- munity relations. Many of the transit agencies participating Fifty-six transit agencies from all parts of North America in the survey provided information about their bicycle ser- provided information about bicycle and transit services for vices on their websites and through brochures. this report. These agencies cited the many benefits of offer- ing bicycle-related services. Bicycle services are thought to Several transit agencies reported that they had developed help to attract more transit riders by extending the catchment positive relationships with bicycle advocacy groups. These area of their transit system and provide greater mobility to advocacy groups helped raise awareness about bicycle and customers at the beginning and end of their transit trips. transit integration programs through e-mail lists, websites, and Accommodating bicycles on transit may also allow bicyclists other activities. A few agencies have developed formal part- to avoid locations where it is unsafe or uncomfortable to ride. nerships with bicycle advocacy groups for managing bicycle Several agencies believed that their bicycle services help parking programs. decrease automobile traffic congestion, reduce air pollution (by shifting automobile drivers to transit), and improve the Several transit agencies have participated in planning public image of transit. efforts with local jurisdictions to ensure that transportation facility construction and land use development facilitate bicy- Transit agencies that provided information for this study cle access to transit. Partnerships between transit agencies and reported very positive reactions from bicyclists and generally local jurisdictions have led to the installation of bicycle lanes, favorable reactions from other transit riders, transit agency bike routes, shared-use paths, bicycle parking, wayfinding staff, and the general public. Some agencies experienced ini- signs, etc., to make it easier for people to bicycle to transit. tial resistance to establishing bicycle services, particularly from transit operators. However, the agencies reported that Although some transit agencies currently record the num- this resistance usually diminished as the services were offered ber of people using bicycle services, few agencies collect over time. Agencies have also used training, demonstrations, data about bicyclists' trip characteristics or bicycle parking and actual experience to overcome this resistance. use. In addition, few agencies have established performance measures for their bicycle services. Agencies have generally experienced few maintenance problems with their bicycle services. Problems that were Of the agencies that collected consistent data on the use of reported by transit agencies included obtaining replacement bicycle services, most found increases in use over time. Sev- parts for broken bus bike racks, abandoned bicycles on bus eral agencies reported significant growth in use during the racks and at transit stations, vandalized bicycle lockers, bus first few years of a new service as information about the ser- washers being damaged by the bus bicycle racks, bus bicy- vice spread to potential customers. Others found that remov- cle racks interfering with windshield wipers, and the need to ing fees and permit requirements or increasing the percent- remove the bus bicycle rack when a bus is towed. age of buses with racks also increased usage levels. Compared with the costs of buses, rail cars, and automo- Bicycle and transit integration is likely to continue to bile parking facilities, it is inexpensive for transit agencies to expand as more agencies begin to offer the services described purchase bicycle equipment, such as bike racks on buses, bike in this synthesis. Information from transit agencies and the hooks in rail cars, and bike racks and lockers at transit sta- TCRP topic panel showed that there are several other areas tions. In addition, most bicycle and transit services do not of potential growth in bicycle and transit integration: impose extra costs on individual bicyclists (other than regular fares). Some agencies charge fees for permits or rental leases Emerging ways of accommodating bicycles on transit, for secure bicycle locker facilities; however, many agencies such as high-capacity bus bicycle racks, bicycle-on-

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41 vanpool services, and new methods for storing bicycles However, new research is needed to provide concrete on rail cars. evidence of the effect of bicycle services on transit Emerging techniques for storing bicycles at transit hubs, ridership.) such as high-capacity bike parking at transit stations What socioeconomic groups are using bicycle-related and full-service staffed bicycle parking. transit services? More on-road bicycle and transit facilities, such as What are the purposes of bicycle-on-transit trips? shared bicycle and bus and bicycle and high-occupancy vehicle lanes. A second major research effort is needed to analyze the New methods of bicycle and transit education, such as economics of bicycle and transit integration programs. At a bus bicycle rack demonstrations for bicyclists and share- basic level, research is needed to determine whether rev- the-road training for bus drivers. enue from additional bicycle transit riders is greater than More coordination with local jurisdictions to provide the expense of providing the bicycle services. More in- bicycle access improvements in areas around transit depth economic analysis could compare the costs of bicy- stops and to include bicycle access information on tran- cle and transit integration programs with a broad range of sit maps. benefits, such as: New performance measures for evaluating the effec- tiveness of bicycle services. Providing customers with more choices of modes for accessing transit; As a result of this effort, several topics are suggested for Improved public image created by offering bicycle future study. Three of these topics are quantifying the amount services; of patronage and demand for bicycle and transit services, Additional political support from bicycle advocates; and comparing the benefits and costs of these services, and rec- Other benefits, such as reductions in the number of auto- ommending ways to increase the use of bicycle-related tran- mobiles on congested roadways, reductions in auto- sit services through marketing. mobile emissions, improvements in public health owing to increased physical activity of bicycle and transit In addition, more research is needed to quantify the num- users, etc. ber and types of people that use bicycle-related transit ser- vices. A first step toward obtaining this information is to An economic analysis could also be conducted from the develop data collection methods to record and survey bicy- cle and transit patrons. Previous counting and survey meth- perspective of the individual bicycle and transit user. This ods should be reviewed. Although a few agencies have sur- analysis should consider out-of-pocket costs, travel time dif- veyed bicycle customers and used new technologies to count ferences, personal physical health benefits and risks, and bicycle boardings, these methods should be refined and new other tradeoffs between using bicycle-related transit services techniques tested. Once efficient and reliable methods of and other travel modes. counting and surveying bicycle and transit users are estab- lished, researchers could conduct detailed studies to answer Finally, there is a need to understand what types of mar- the following questions: keting strategies are most effective in increasing the use of bicycle-related transit services. Researchers could determine How many customers started using transit because of which elements of bicycle and transit integration are the most new bicycle services, rather than existing transit cus- attractive to potential customers. This analysis could incor- tomers switching from some other mode to using bicy- porate information about the types of people that currently cles? (Several transit agencies have found an increase use bicycle services and the most common types of bicycle in the use of bicycle services over time and increases transit trips. Current marketing efforts might be evaluated and when bicycle service was expanded. Anecdotal evidence new techniques examined. The results of this research may indicates that some of these additional users would not enable transit agencies to design more effective marketing have taken transit if bicycle services were not offered. strategies in the future.