Opportunities and Threats
NECTAR Series on Transportation and Communications Networks Research
Edited by Nikolas Thomopoulos, Mosche Givoni and Piet Rietveld
Chapter 8: ICT and planning for increased cycling in Europe – now and tomorrow
This chapter explores how ICT can be used to improve the practice of transport planning for cycling. A new understanding of cycling behaviour and preferences is presented using GPS data. This can also be used to help evaluate the quality of urban transport systems from a cycling point of view. The chapter presents findings from a number of sub-studies within the Swedish research programme CyCity: from car-oriented to cycle-oriented cities. Also discussed are potential opportunities for more widespread use of GPS data for informing cycle planning, and even threats. GPS data from cyclists was gathered as part of CyCity and used for the development of new software for analysing cyclists’ travel behaviour and preferences. Linköping in Sweden and Ljubljana in Slovenia were the subjects of the data collection programme. These two cities have different types of cycling infrastructure and cycling modal share. One conclusion of the study is that cyclists’ GPS data is a powerful source for analysing the quality of urban transport networks, and secondly, that the use of GPS devices has the potential to cut costs for data collection and analysis. The quality of the GPS data collected was generally deemed as good or fair; however, potential limitations exist regarding the quality of GPS data when collected in dense urban areas. This needs to be considered when choosing an appropriate GPS device for recording cycle routes, and in turn makes the use of specialist software a necessity for analysing such data.
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