Heterogeneity in the Relationship Between the Built Environment and Bicycling

Bicycling offers a wide range of benefits to both individuals and society. Cycling is an environmentally friendly and affordable mode of transportation that is viable for short distance trips. Using bicycles instead of cars reduces fuel consumption and associated harmful emissions, provides exercise for the cyclists, and can improve quality of life overall. For these reasons, urban planners, public health advocates, and others are looking for strategies to promote more bicycling, including improvements to the built environment that make bicycling more attractive. An understanding of the relationship between the built environment and individual decisions to bicycle provides an important basis for the development of such strategies. The present study adds to this existing literature by focusing on the heterogeneity in the association between built environment characteristics and bicycling behavior. Of existing studies, only a handful explicitly investigated heterogeneity in this relationship, and these are limited to heterogeneity across genders (Trapp et al., 2011; Mitra and Nash, 2018). A comparison of the larger universe of prior studies indicates that associations between bicycling and built environment characteristics are not always consistent, suggesting that heterogeneity is present. Because each study’s sample, measure of the built environment, and estimation method was different, however, it is unclear whether the inconsistency in prior findings was due to different samples, measures, and methods, or due to heterogeneity in the underlying relationships. The research team uses a single large survey together with measures of built environment characteristics and consistent statistical methods to estimate the association between bicycling frequency and built environment characteristics for different subpopulations.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $60,856
  • Contract Numbers:


  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

    University Transportation Centers Program
    Department of Transportation
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Managing Organizations:

    Center for Teaching Old Models New Tricks (TOMNET)

    Arizona State University
    Tempe, AZ  United States  85287
  • Performing Organizations:

    Center for Teaching Old Models New Tricks (TOMNET)

    Arizona State University
    Tempe, AZ  United States  85287
  • Principal Investigators:

    Salon, Deborah

  • Start Date: 20181001
  • Expected Completion Date: 20201001
  • Actual Completion Date: 0
  • USDOT Program: University Transportation Centers Program

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01754976
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Center for Teaching Old Models New Tricks (TOMNET)
  • Contract Numbers: 69A3551747116
  • Files: UTC, RIP
  • Created Date: Oct 20 2020 6:14PM