“The denser the urban environment (particularly for rail), the more bike sharing provides new connections that substitute for existing ones. The less dense the environment, the more bike sharing establishes new connections to the existing public transit system.”
Several weeks ago, Raleigh completed a feasibility study that found the city able to support a bike share program. Why is this such exciting news? Another recent research study shows that bike sharing has started to serve as a growing mode of public transportation. Bike sharing can establish new connections to the existing public transit system or become users’ predominant means of transportation. In Washington, D.C., bike sharers reduced their car use and their use of the D.C. Metro, especially if they had shorter commutes near the city center. The result? Less crowded highways and less crowded rail cars. On the other hand, in bike share cities like Minneapolis where riders took longer light rail trips, rail use increased. Researchers found that in those cases, riders used bike sharing for the first and last portions of their trip – to and from the light rail. Whether it’s used in place of other forms of public transit or as a supplemental mode, it looks like bike sharing is here to stay.
“Trains in the outer suburbs are every 20 minutes or so at peak hours. If you’re just travelling along the central corridor (say from Hauptbahnhof to Marienplatz), there’s a train every 2 minutes. Two. Freaking. Minutes.”
Ever tried public transit abroad? Ridden the S-Bahn or the U-Bahn? How about the London Underground? Some cities caution you to stay behind the yellow line while others suggest you “mind the gap.” But how do these international transit systems compare to one another? In Frankfurt, you can pay for one ticket to your final destination and then take as long as you’d like getting there. Or maybe you’d prefer Seoul, where your transit card pays rail, bus and taxi fare, but also doubles as a debit card in local convenience stores. Purchasing those plane tickets yet? Click here to see the ten cities one author claims have the best public transit systems in the world.