Bikeshare’s elevation challenge


“@bikeshare needs to better incentive uphill trips to Ward 1!”

There’s some anecdotal evidence that suggests that people are riding CaBi bikes downhill to get to wherever they’re going, and then taking the bus or Metro back uphill, rather than trying to huff it and puff it on one of the heavy red bikes. It’s something that was discussed last year on the “Kojo Nnamdi Show.” In theory, it makes perfect sense.

I dug into the data and found that it’s happening to an extent — more people are riding CaBi bikes down hills than back up them — but it’s not happening at quite the exaggerated rate that some people seem to suggest.

The truth is that the majority of Capital Bikeshare trips start and end at about the same elevation. I looked at 327,680 trips taken from January through March of 2012 in the District (unfortunately I had to exclude Arlington due to issues with the elevation data), and the median elevation change was only 2.9 feet downhill. That’s it!

[Continue reading Rob Pitingolo’s post at Extraordinary Observations.]

Rob Pitingolo blogs at Extraordinary Observations. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.

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