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Sustainability 2017, 9(2), 241; doi:10.3390/su9020241

Assessing the Bicycle Network in St. Louis: A PlaceBased User-Centered Approach

Center for Sustainability, Saint Louis University, St. Louis, MO 63108, USA
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Received: 20 December 2016 / Accepted: 6 February 2017 / Published: 9 February 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Urban and Rural Development)
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Abstract

To transition towards sustainability and increase low-impact transportation, city planners are integrating bicycle infrastructure in urban landscapes. Yet, this infrastructure only promotes cycling according to how well it is sited within a specific city. How to best site bicycle facilities is essential for sustainability planning. We review approaches to assessing and siting new bicycle facilities. Following sustainability science, we argue that active cyclists should be consulted to incorporate users’ site-specific knowledge into bicycle infrastructure assessments. We then pilot an approach that surveys cyclists concerning level of stress along routes ridden in St. Louis, MO, USA. Among the active cyclists surveyed (n = 89), we found stress correlates with speed limit, roadway classification, and number of lanes. Although cyclists surveyed in St. Louis prefer roads with bike lanes over roads with sharrows or no infrastructure, the presence of bicycle infrastructure had no correlation with reported levels of stress. The piloted survey and spatial analytic tool are transferable to other localities. For planners, the maps generated by this participant data approach identify high-stress routes as targets of new infrastructure or information to direct cyclists to safer routes. For bicyclists, the maps generated identify low-stress routes for recreation and commuting. View Full-Text
Keywords: bicycle; cycling; urban planning; transportation planning; place; bicycle infrastructure; sustainability science; siting; stakeholder engagement; urban bicycle; cycling; urban planning; transportation planning; place; bicycle infrastructure; sustainability science; siting; stakeholder engagement; urban
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Boettge, B.; Hall, D.M.; Crawford, T. Assessing the Bicycle Network in St. Louis: A PlaceBased User-Centered Approach. Sustainability 2017, 9, 241.

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