Is tech-enhanced bikeshare a substitute or complement for public transit?

Is tech-enhanced bikeshare a substitute or complement for public transit?

Technology-enhanced bikeshare features a dockless system with GPS-tracked electric bikes and a mobile app. As an additional transportation mode, it offers users greater accessibility and more flexibility compared to traditional bikeshare. This paper examines the causal impact of a tech-enhanced bikeshare program on public transit ridership, using evidence from a mid-sized metropolitan area in the Midwest of the United States. 

Key findings

The initial pedal bicycle fleet with a dockless system increased bus ridership by 1% and the subsequent upgrades to electric bikes further increased bus ridership by an additional 1.1%.

The increased bus ridership occurred where and when the travel demand arose, providing suggestive evidence of bikeshare trips solving the first-/last-mile problem.

The increased bus ridership occurred mostly in block groups with a lower median household income, a younger population, lower vehicle ownership rate, and lower homeownership rate.

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