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Surveys of Bicyclists

HEY! Add link to NYC DCP NEW SURVEY!!!!!

On-Street Survey:
The typical commuter cyclist is a middle aged person earning in excess of $15,000 per year. The survey results indicated 3 out of 5 commuter cyclists are male but the likelihood of obtaining a response from a male was most likely grater as the majority of interviewers were also males. Debriefing remarks made by the interviewers, however, indicated that a more normal gender distribution is probable.

56 percent of respondents have had at least one bicycle stolen.

22 percent have had a serious fall or accident within the last year. What constituted "serious" was left to the respondent.

The primary reasons given for commuting by bicycle were to cut expenses and obtain exercise. Convenience and dissatisfaction with other mode choices were secondary, while environmental considerations (e.g., cycling is non-polluting) were of only minor importance.

The survey was successful in reaching the commuting cyclist population: 80 percent of the respondents made their particular trip 5 of more times a week; 99 percent made the trip 3 or more times a week; and 80 percent of the respondents were traveling to work.

Decisions as to route of travel are based primarily upon speed and convenience considerations.

Based upon origin and destination information and the number of blocks cyclists would travel to reach an exclusive bike lane, a Fifth Avenue bicycle facility would receive the most bicycle traffic.

Cyclists ranked taxis as the greatest hazard to cycling in midtown.

Cyclists ranked improved street maintenance and air quality as the most desirable change to their environment.

Potential Bicycle Commuter Survey:
A commuter population residing within 5 miles of midtown was reached.

Provision of exclusive bikelanes is the single most important factor in realizing the potential commuter population.

Physical exertion, clothing considerations, travel time and carrying capacity are not discouragements to the potential cycling population.

Increased exposure to air pollution, traffic and weather are mildly discouraging factors.

The lack of secure parking facilities and pavement surface conditions are the principal deterrents to bicycle commuting.

Taxi Driver Survey:
Respondents were full-time taxi drivers who do not bicycle in midtown: 40 percent own bicycles, 16 percent bike regularly

96 percent of the respondents believe bicycles cause increased congestion but 65 percent believe exclusive bikelanes would relieve traffic congestion.

Most cabbies are skeptical regarding the validity of the bicycle as a means of transportation in midtown.

26 percent of the drivers have had an accident involving a bicycle.

Non-User Survey:
75 percent of respondents were interviewed while making a work trip.

For the purpose of the trip in question, 40 percent of respondents were subway riders, 26 percent were bus riders, 10 percent were taxi patrons and 8 percent were auto drivers.

39 percent of the respondents claimed to own bicycles.

The gender ration of respondents was 65% male, 35% female.

15 percent of the respondents making intra-Manhattan trips claimed to have ridden a bicycle to midtown during the past year.

58 percent of the respondents maintained that they would become commuter cyclists if exclusive bike lanes and secure bike paring were provided.

The lack of bicycle parking and air pollution were given as major discouragements to midtown cycling.

Provision of exclusive bikelanes was the item listed most often as an encouragement to bicycling in midtown.

[Real Estate Survey]
Only Kautman Realty Corp. has an established policy of promoting bicycle access and providing facilities

Trip Length Distribution of Existing Midtown Bicycle Trips (Table B-4)

Trip Length Range           Percent of Trips of This Length
(miles)                         Each         Cumulative

0 to 1                           3.3              3.3
1 to 2                          16.7             20.0
2 to 3                          28.0             48.0
3 to 4                          40.0             88.0
4 to 5                           8.0             96.0
greater than 5                   4.0            100.0

[If there were bikeways separated from motor vehicle traffic and sufficient bicycle parking. Their estimate conservatively provides that all switched trips would be under 2 miles. --dc]
Potential Daily Bicycle Work Trips by Previous Mode (Table C-2)

Previous Mode        Potential Bike Work Trips

Auto driver                     950
Taxi                          5,600
Subway                       20,300
Bus                          32,400

total                        59,250

[In asking what percentage of your midtown trips do you make by bicycle, they put no categories over 50%. In asking household income, it only had categories up to $14,999 then it was over $25,000 which is kind of low. -- dc]

--Route Report, Manhattan Commuter Bicycle System Study, July, 1978. Prepared for: NYC DOT; Prepared by Edwards and Kelcey, in association with Transportation Alternatives.


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Last updated: 7 April 1999