We’ve noted before that it can be challenging to figure out exactly how much driving is avoided when someone rides a bike. But here we have it straight from the horse’s mouth – nearly 7,000 horses, in fact. According to a November 2012 survey of Capital Bikeshare members, released today, the average subscriber drove 198 miles less per year after joining the system. Multiply that by 22,200 members and that’s 3.7 million pounds of CO2 that won’t get belched into the atmosphere. Nice work, CaBistas!
Some other takeaways from the member survey:
Capital Bikeshare both enhances access to transit and shifts trips away from transit. Almost a quarter of CaBi users had used bike-share to get to the bus in the past month, and 17 percent had used it six or more times to access the metro system. At the same time, transit is the mode most likely to get replaced with bike-share trips: 61 percent of respondents say they ride Metrorail less often and 52 percent ride a bus less often. On the plus side, though, 50 percent drive less often.
For any given trip, if bike-share hadn’t been available, 44 percent would have taken a bus or train, 38 percent would have walked, 5 percent would have ridden their own bike, and 4 percent would have driven.
Bike-share members drive less. According to the survey report, “a quarter (26 percent) reduced their driving miles since joining Capital Bikeshare; 11 percent reduced driving by more than 1,000 miles. Two-thirds (65 percent) of respondents who reported their mileage made no change in driving miles; only 9 percent increased their driving miles.” CaBi members were never big drivers, but they reported driving an average 1,805 miles per year before joining Capital Bikeshare and 1,607 miles per year since joining, “for a reduction of about 198 miles annually” per person – or a cumulative 4.4 million miles.
Of the 4.4 million miles not driven… more than half are commuting miles, which often occur at peak hours. That’s a significant amount of car traffic taken off Washington’s streets by these snazzy red bikes. In total, 58 percent of members use it to go to and from work, and 40 percent commute via bike-share “often.” All together, about half of bike-share trips are work-related.
CaBi saves members money. An average of $15.39 per week, in fact – or about $800 annually, per person.