Investigation of Bicycle Service Quality in Ames

Starrett, Rochelle
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Although cycling is growing as a transportation mode in the United States, significant barriers still exist for this mode when compared to driving, including poor infrastructure throughout most of the United States. Relatively little is known about the impact of transportation infrastructure on bicycle service quality, and this lack of understanding makes it more difficult for transportation planners and engineers to explicitly consider bicyclists in transportation design decisions. This study asks Ames cyclists to evaluate service quality at various signalized intersections in the Ames area, in addition to providing feedback on how different cycling facilities and roadway features enhance the cycling experience. Using the results of this survey, the inter-relationships among geometric design, cycling infrastructure, service quality, and cyclist experience level was examined. This survey was distributed to Ames area cyclists through three local bike shops, the Ames Bike Coalition, and the Iowa State University Cycling Club. The results of this study provide insights on how bicyclists’ perceptions of intersection characteristics and other geometric design features affect cyclist experience. The findings provide further support for continuing efforts to explicitly integrate bicyclist level of service as part of roadway planning and design.