Navigation

Infrastructure, programs,and policies to increase bicycling: An international review

In some ways this paper by Pucher, Dill & Handy (2010) is stating what we already know or suspect but it is important that policy development is evidence based and so I welcome finding this paper examining how infrastructure, programs,and policies impact on participation in cycling. The authors in the paper published in the journal, Preventive Medicine conclude that

most of the evidence examined in this review supports the crucial role of public policy in encouraging bicycling. Substantial increases in bicycling require an integrated package of many different, complementary interventions, including infrastructure provision and pro-bicycle programs, supportive land use planning, and restrictions on car use.

There is clearly a message in this paper for the Western Australian Minister of Transport, Troy Buswell as he develops and finalises the Western Australian Bicycle Network Plan 2012 – 2021 and Western Australia’s contribution to the National Bicycle Strategy.

Preventive Medicine

Preventive Medicine

The abstract of Pucher, Dill & Handy (2010) is reproduced below:

Objectives. To assess existing research on the effects of various interventions on levels of bicycling. Interventions include infrastructure (e.g., bike lanes and parking), integration with public transport, education and marketing programs, bicycle access programs, and legal issues.

Methods. A comprehensive search of peer-reviewed and non-reviewed research identified139 studies. Study methodologies varied considerably in type and quality, with few meeting rigorous standards. Secondary data were gathered for 14 case study cities that adopted multiple interventions.

Results. Many studies show positive associations between specific interventions and levels of bicycling. The 14 case studies show that almost all cities adopting comprehensive packages of interventions experienced large increases in the number of bicycle trips and share of people bicycling.

Conclusions. Most of the evidence examined in this review supports the crucial role of public policy in encouraging bicycling. Substantial increases in bicycling require an integrated package of many different, complementary interventions, including infrastructure provision and pro-bicycle programs, supportive land use planning, and restrictions on car use.

The key point to take from Pucher, Dill & Handy (2010) is just how important public policy is in encouraging bicycling and hence how important it is in having an impact on public health, on families and on issues such as traffic congestion.  In Western Australia we have so much to learn from the work of academics such as these meta-analysis papers.  We just need to know take it on board the knowledge presented to us.

The full reference for Pucher, Dill & Handy (2010) is:

Pucher, J., Dill, J., & Handy, S. (2010). Infrastructure, programs,and policies to increase bicycling: An international review. Preventive Medicine, 50 (S106–S125).

The link takes you to a PDF download copy of the paper.

No comments yet.

Please share your thoughts ...

%d bloggers like this: