Bicycle Infrastructure and Traffic Congestion: Evidence from DC's Capital Bikeshare

Resources for the Future Discussion Paper 15-20

51 Pages Posted: 25 Aug 2015

See all articles by Timothy Hamilton

Timothy Hamilton

University of Richmond

Casey Wichman

Resources for the Future

Date Written: August 20, 2015

Abstract

We explore the impact of bicycle-sharing infrastructure on urban transportation. Accounting for selection bias in a matching framework, we estimate a causal effect of the Capital Bikeshare on traffic congestion in the metropolitan Washington, DC, area. We exploit a unique traffic dataset that is finely defined on a spatial and temporal scale. Our approach examines within-city commuting decisions as opposed to traffic patterns on major thruways. Empirical results suggest that the availability of a bikeshare reduces traffic congestion by 2 to 3% within a neighborhood. We also identify geographic spillovers that may counteract benefits from reductions in local pollution.

Keywords: traffic congestion, public transportation, bicycle-sharing, pollution, environmental externalities

JEL Classification: L91, H40, Q53, R41, R53

Suggested Citation

Hamilton, Timothy and Wichman, Casey, Bicycle Infrastructure and Traffic Congestion: Evidence from DC's Capital Bikeshare (August 20, 2015). Resources for the Future Discussion Paper 15-20. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2649978 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2649978

Timothy Hamilton (Contact Author)

University of Richmond ( email )

United States

Casey Wichman

Resources for the Future ( email )

1616 P Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States
2023285055 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.rff.org/wichman

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