Bicycle commuting on the rise: Middle-aged men leading the way [via SFGate]

A forthcoming article to be published in Transportation Research A, Vol. 47 entitled Bicycling renaissance in North America? An update and re-appraisal of cycling trends and policies has concluded that cycling rates and interest are indeed on the rise, but the boom has been limited to a few dozen cities that have invested in improving cycling and these places are "islands in a sea of car-dominance."
some key findings:
  • Percentage of workers commuting by bike is almost four times higher in urban versus rural areas. (0.60% v 0.16%)
  • Between 2001 and 2009 the overall share of bike trips by men between 40-64 years old went from 10% to 21% in the US. Cycling Rates among women fell from 36% to 24% for that period.
  • Canadian women cycle to work more than US women do (29% of trips made versus 24%) even though the female work force for each country compares (47% in Canada and 46% in US). No data set exists for a non-work bike trip comparison.
  • The bike share of workers in the USA ranged from a low of 0.1% in Alabama, Tennessee, and West Virginia to highs of 1.9% in the District of Columbia and Oregon.
  • The highest cycling rates in the entire continent are in the Yukon (2.6%) and the Northwest Territories (2.1%), two of the coldest parts of Canada.
  • Between 1988 and 2008, the total number of cyclist fatalities fell by 21% in the USA and by 66% in Canada, but with considerable fluctuations year by year in both countries.
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