Bicycle

Published on December 31st, 2013 | by James Ayre

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Worldwide Bike-Share Boom Visualized In New Graphs

December 31st, 2013 by

The past fifteen years have seen a massive boom in the number of bike-share programs around the world — an exponential increase that looks likely to continue into the immediately foreseeable future.

Talking about this boom is just one thing, though; visualizing it is another, and that’s where these new graphs (pictured below) from the Institute for Transportation & Development Policy (ITDP) come in handy — they really help to drive the point home.

bikeshare growth

TreeHugger provides more:

Last week, Lloyd wrote about a great bike share guide. In the video about it, a couple of slides about bike sharing are shown, and I think they deserve a standalone article. The first one, above, shows the tipping point that was reached a few years ago, and the massive growth since then. At a scale that shows the recent increase in number of bikes in bike shares, the previous growth basically looks like a flat line. That’s how different the past few years have been!

A catalyst has been the launch of Velo’v and Vélib in France, but new bike shares have popped up all over and the number of stations and bikes has steadily climbed, which has helped increase usage, as the chart below shows. There definitely seems to be a correlation between how many bikes are available and the number of trips, which makes sense. It’s all about convenience: Can you find a bike when you need one? Can you drop it off at a station close to where you’re going? Do you see many other bikes from the bike share riding around the city (creating social proof)? All these help keep the boom going (for example, bike-sharing in the US expected to reach 37,000 bikes in 2014 (4x more than in 2012!)).

Bike share graph 2

With the factors behind the bike-share boom now detailed, there’s only one thing that remains to be said be said: MAKE USE OF THEM. :)

Image Credit: FHA/Screen capture

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About the Author

's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.



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