Who are Bicyclists? Why and How Much are they Bicycling?
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The objective of this paper is to explore and unravel the factors influencing the decision to bicycle, with a view to inform the development of appropriate and effective strategies to increase bicycling use and promote the health of individuals as well as the environment. The data used in the analysis are drawn from a survey of Texas bicyclists, and the study includes a comprehensive explanatory analysis of bicyclists and their bicycling habits. Further, different econometric models are employed to evaluate the determinants of bicyclists' perception, in terms of safety and quality issues, and the frequency of bicycling for commute and non-commute purposes. In general, the results of the study indicate that the perceptions of the quality of bicycle facilities and safety from traffic crashes show significant variation based on bicyclists' demographic and work characteristics, and bicycle amenities/facilities on the commute route and at the work place. Also, bicyclist demographics (gender, age, education level, and commute distance), household demographics (number of automobiles, number of bicycles, and number of children), residential location and season, bicycle amenities at work (bicycle racks and showers), bicyclist perceptions of the overall quality of bicycle facilities, and bicycle use characteristics impact commute and non-commute bicycling frequency. These study results can assist in the development of informed policies to increase commute and non-commute bicycling, and also highlight the continuing need for detailed surveys to understand bicycling behavior.