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Thursday, May 31, 2012

Green Lane Gets More Women Riding in LA [LAB]


There’s no simple or single solution to get more women riding bikes in the U.S. In 2009, women accounted for just 24 percent of bike trips and the reasons for that under-representation are numerous and complex.
Jennifer Klausner (left) and Alexis Lantz (right) of the LACBC (Credit: Women on Bikes SoCal)
But one thing is becoming clear — specific types of facilities can dramatically impact the number of female cyclists.
The latest evidence? New data on a separated bike lane in downtown Los Angeles, California.
In late 2011, the city installed a green buffered bike lane on Spring Street, a major corridor in the downtown district. The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (which, incidentally, is staffed by some phenomenal female leaders) wanted to capture the impact of the new facility, so they conducted bike counts before and after the paint went down. Released this month, the results are impressive.
Overall, riding went up 52 percent after the green lane was installed, with a particularly big jump on the weekends (250 percent). But even more eye-opening was the gender shift.

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