Six-in-Ten Albertans Support Dedicated Bike Lanes

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A majority of residents (56%) favour the implementation of a bicycle sharing system similar to the ones in London, Paris, New York, and Montreal.

Calgary, AB – In late April, Calgary’s City Council voted in favour of building a dedicated network of cycle only lanes as a one-year pilot project set to begin in the summer of 2015.

A new Insights West survey of a representative sample of Albertans has found that just under six-in-ten (59%) support separated bike lanes and bike pathways (20% strongly support), while one-third (35%) are opposed (21% strongly oppose).

Support is highest in cities outside of Calgary and Edmonton where a full two-thirds (66%) give their endorsement. Support for dedicated bike lanes also decreases with age. Residents aged 18-to-34 are the most likely to back separated bike lanes (72%) compared to those aged 35-to-54 (59%) and 55 or older (53%).

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Most residents across Alberta agree that bike lanes have a positive impact on the safety of commuters. Two-thirds (65%) agree that bike lanes are safer for both cyclists and motorists, while more than seven-in-ten (72%) agree that having separated bike lanes increases the safety and comfort for cyclists. Albertans also view bike lanes as an opportunity to be physically active (65%).

However, residents are divided on whether bike lanes have added value to urban development. While 45% agree the lanes are adding value, 39% disagree.

There are also some perceived downsides surrounding bike lanes. Six-in-ten Albertans (60%) indicate that bike lanes have made parking more difficult, and more than half (53%) disagree that bike lanes are a good use of taxpayer money.

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Majority Interested in Bike-Sharing System in Alberta Cities

Cities such as London, Paris, New York and Montreal have implemented a bicycle sharing system where bicycles are made available for shared use to individuals on a short-term basis. When asked about it, 56% of Albertans support such an initiative (21% strongly support), while 29% oppose it (18% strongly opposed). A further 16% are unsure. Among residents aged 18-34, support increases markedly to 63%.

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“While there are some concerns about dedicated bike lanes and bike pathways in Alberta’s cities, the majority of residents support the idea,” said Jane Ha-Trapp, Vice President at Insights West. “Younger Albertans are most supportive but overall, Albertans of all ages are on-board with the idea.”

 

About Insights West:

Insights West is a progressive, Western-based, full-service marketing research company. It exists to serve the market with insights-driven research solutions and interpretive analysis through leading-edge tools, normative databases, and senior-level expertise across a broad range of public and private sector organizations. Insights West is based in Vancouver and Calgary and has ten full-time and five part-time employees.

Results are based on online studies with Your Insights panel members conducted from April 13-28, 2014, among 720 Alberta residents aged 18+. YourInsights.ca is Insights West’s in-house access panel offering on-demand samples for both clients and research suppliers looking for Western Canadian populations. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for Alberta for age, gender, and region. While statistical margins of error are arguably not applicable to online panels/online studies of this nature, we have assumed that the same margins of error apply as if it were a true unweighted random probability sample: the sample would therefore have a margin of error of +/- 4.01 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty. View the detailed data tabulations [click here].

For further information, please contact:

Jane Ha-Trapp
Vice President, Insights West
403-860-5277
janehatrapp@insightswest.com

Mario Canseco
Vice President, Public Affairs
778-929-0490
mariocanseco@insightswest.com