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Promoting active mobility: Evidence-based decision-making using statistical models

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Abstract and Figures

Shifting traffic to active transport modes (eg. walking/cycling) poses one of the most promising ways of tackling the persisting challenges that arise from motorized traffic. However, planning and policy making in walking and cycling domains is frequently impeded by a small-scaled and heterogeneous political landscape that rarely acts based on evidence thus limiting cost-effectiveness and target achievement. This paper proposes a largely data-driven planning approach that builds upon aggregated statistical models explaining walking and cycling modal shares. In addition to investigating a comprehensive set of influencing factors in relevant fields such as environment, climate, infrastructure or demographics, we bring attention to the role of political and administrative commitment in aggregated modal share modeling. Results suggest that our holistic approach is feasible both methodologically and in terms of its applicability in planning practice. As a first step towards evidence-based decision making the incremental effects of individual planning measures can be simulated and thus be used to rank options according to their effectiveness. Another outcome lies in the data-driven identification of spatial target areas for specific agenda setting in terms of awareness, mobility behavior, infrastructure, settlement structure and other planning-relevant domains.
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Promoting active mobility: Evidence-based decision-making using
statistical models
Roland Hackl a, Clemens Raffler a
, Michael Friesenecker a, Hans Kramar b,
Robert Kalasek b, Aggelos Soteropoulos b, Susanne Wolf-Eberl c, Patrick Posch c,
Rupert Tomschy d
atbw research GesmbH, Schönbrunner Straße 297 1120 Vienna, Austria
bUniversity of Technology Vienna, Augasse 2-6 1090 Vienna, Austria
cResearch & Data Competence, Wiedner Hauptstraße 39/Hofgebäude 1040 Vienna, Austria
dHERRY Consult GmbH, Argentinierstraße 21 1040 Vienna, Austria
Shifting traffic to active transport modes (eg. walking/cycling) poses one of the most promising ways of tackling
the persisting challenges that arise from motorized traffic. However, planning and policy making in walking and
cycling domains is frequently impeded by a small-scaled and heterogeneous political landscape that rarely acts
based on evidence thus limiting cost-effectiveness and target achievement. This paper proposes a largely data-
driven planning approach that builds upon aggregated statistical models explaining walking and cycling modal
shares. In addition to investigating a comprehensive set of influencing factors in relevant fields such as
environment, climate, infrastructure or demographics, we bring attention to the role of political and
administrative commitment in aggregated modal share modeling. Results suggest that our holistic approach is
feasible both methodologically and in terms of its applicability in planning practice. As a first step towards
evidence-based decision making the incremental effects of individual planning measures can be simulated and
thus be used to rank options according to their effectiveness. Another outcome lies in the data-driven
identification of spatial target areas for specific agenda setting in terms of awareness, mobility behavior,
infrastructure, settlement structure and other planning-relevant domains.
Keywords: active mobility; walking/cycling determinants; political commitment to set actions; statistical
modeling; GIS; regional policies; transport policy; transport planning; evidence-based planning; settlement
structure; accessibility; social milieus; operationalization.
Disclaimer: This paper combines the work presented at REAL CORP Conference 2017 (see Hackl et al. 2017)
and the content submitted to Transport Research Arena 2018 (see Hackl et al. 2018). It extends the previous
work through additional analyses on political and administrative commitment and provides a combined
presentation of both pedestrian and cycling statistical models.
* Corresponding author. Tel.: +43-660-260-1870.
E-mail address:
1. Introduction
1.1. Active mobility planning in Austria a story of great plans and small steps
Since the beginning of mass motorization, the growing shares in motorized traffic pose a serious challenge in
Austrian as well as international transport planning. Problems that arise from the negative external effects
generated along the development path of today’s transport system (Merki 2008) present themselves as air-, noise
and other environmental pollution, negative health effects and high accident rates as well as specific urban
challenges pertaining to a lack of space (Perschon 2012). The numerous downsides of motorized traffic have
been often discussed, see Buchwald and et al. (1993), Banister (2008), Knoflacher (2013) or Cervero (2013) and
highlight the importance of a change in transport planning paradigms.
In contrast to ongoing motorization, the international focus of traffic planning has gradually shifted towards
active modes which are often labelled as a sustainable basis for modern transport systems (see Vandenbulcke et
al. 2008; Rietveld and Daniel 2004; Lovelace et al. 2017). They feature a set of desirable ecological (resource
neutrality, zero-emission, downsize of land consumption), economical (reflecting an indirect net product for
Austria of up to 882.5 Mio.€, equivalent to 18.328 full-time jobs) (BMLFUW 2009) and socially (positive
impact on health) sustainable properties (Meschik and Traub 2008).
In quantitative terms the current challenges for the Austrian transport system regarding mode-choice become
apparent when looking at the recent mobility surveys. Comparing 2013/2014 ‘Österreich Unterwegs’ (BMVIT
2016) total shares in motorized traffic with the preceding survey in 1995 reveals that private car shares (as a
driver and co-driver) increased by 6.6% during this 19 year period. This amounts to 57.1% of total motorized
traffic in 2013/2014 whereas pedestrian traffic shares dropped substantially from 26.9% to 17.4%. Cycling,
featuring the lowest shares with 5.3% and 6.5%, more or less stagnated
In order to mitigate the above negative external effects a number of policy papers with respect to active travel
have been drafted in Austria. In general it can be stated that on both national and federal levels there is a policy
emphasis on cycling traffic. The masterplans for cycling (BMLFUW 2011; BMLFUW 2015b) aim at increasing
bicycle shares to 10% in 2015 and 13% until 2025. In contrast to the quantitative goals in cycling, the current
pedestrian masterplan (BMLFUW 2015a) doesn’t feature a target pedestrian share. Instead its focus lies on
suggesting dedicated actions including the prioritization of pedestrian needs in newly planned settlements, better
infrastructure, awareness raising, coordination between planning and administrative bodies, monitoring of modal
shares, safety measures and in-depth mobility research. A recent momentum regarding political commitment to
walking originates from the international Charter for walking (walk21 2017). However, the strategic documents
on national and federal levels don’t bear legal obligations for local planning agencies to actually enhance
walking or cycling quality. While it is popular amongst local decision makers to commit themselves to the
improvement of walkability in cities and villages, there is yet no quantitative evidence that this commitment
actually results in increased pedestrian shares (rather, pedestrian share dropped significantly in the last two
decades). Nonetheless some federal plans set even higher goals such as increasing active modal shares to 40% by
2035 in Carinthia (Carinthian government 2016).
One of the key drivers of engaging in developing evidence-based planning approaches in this research project is
a general lack of quantitative information on the effectiveness of different (infrastructure) measures in Austria.
There is no systemically collected data that allows for determining the quantitative impact of planning measures
on walking or cycling shares. Hence there are no hard and fast rules for identifying the most effective measures.
This is a major drawback when it comes to agenda-setting and decision-making in active mobility planning,
particularly under difficult general conditions (e.g. restricted budgets, conflicts of interest with other transport
modes, etc.).
On top of that, the decentralized structure of the Austrian planning system somewhat impedes coordinated action
and the implementation of the federal strategies and funding programs (see fig. 1). Since most of the legal
competence for infrastructure planning is in the hands of the 2100 Austrian municipalities, high level
masterplans cannot impose actions at municipality levels where responsibility to build infrastructure for active
modes resides for the most part. Due to a fragmented local political landscape and the sheer number of decision
making bodies, the political commitment and/or willingness to invest into active mobility measures can be
characterized as rather heterogeneous. While there are generally accepted technical planning guidelines and
recommendations (Meschik and Traub 2008) or the generic RVS guidelines for non-motorized traffic suggesting
minimum technical standards they are not legally binding (FSV 2019). Hence it is difficult to identify an
Austrian-wide political common sense relating to cycling and walking planning.
For comparability those figures refer to workdays in autumn. The 2013/14 values for an average day of the week amount to 60.5%
(motorized transport), 17.8% (walking) and 6,4% (cycling), respectively.
Fig. 1 Structure of the Austrian bicycle planning System (Raffler 2016)
Planners are confronted with increasingly difficult general conditions: to achieve the best outcome in terms of
increasing pedestrian and cycling shares, i.e. modal shift effects while at the same time being quite limited
financially. The main problem to be addressed is “that investments in cycling promotion are currently not always
put into action where they may be most expedient, but there, where local political will is the highest” (Raffler et
al. 2019) which is even more true for walking. This is exemplified looking at the federal state of Upper-Austria
and comparing planning actions (measured as number of cycling projects funded by the Austrian federal ministry
of environment BMLFUW klimaaktiv program) and respective cycling shares at municipality level: By
looking at Figure 2 it becomes clear that current agenda setting and investment into cycling promoting measures
does not reflect actual performance in terms of cycling shares. In addition to the different levels of political
commitment, the weak relationship shows that the simple rationale of investing into any projects in order to
boost non-motorized modal shares does not duly account for the complexity behind active mode choice and its
driving forces.
Fig. 2 Comparison between the number of number of klimaaktiv projects for the promotion of cycling shares
In a nutshell, a general lack of knowledge about cause and effect patterns between active modes and their drivers
in the respective contexts of user groups and local settings is currently impeding agenda setting and planning
actions aiming at creating a substantial modal shift towards active travel.
1.2. Research as evidence based-role models: Concepts, methods, findings and their application
International research on active mobility planning includes a broad spectrum of papers aiming at remedying the
above planning problems by suggesting decision support to planners and political stakeholders. This builds upon
the concept of evidence-based planning which represents the main rationale for planners and policy makers
(Faludi 2006). This approach originates from Western-European planning culture (Davoudi 2006) and its
influence can be found in papers from the UK and the Benelux-States (see Parkin et al. 2007b, Vandenbulcke et
al. 2008, Rietveld and Daniel 2004). The paradigm is to better understand the factors that influence the
respective mode-choice which then can be used as scientific evidence in the planning process. This is
particularly true for research in the cycling domain and was best reflected by Heinen et al. (2010): “In order to
be able to develop sound policies that encourage cycling, it is essential to understand what determines bicycle
use.“ The main rationale behind investigating the determining factors of active travel is to reveal the relevant
mechanisms planners may need to address in order to positively influence the development of active modal
shares (Parkin et al. 2007b). Another key advantage of a solid evidence base on active mobility is that funding
activities can be focused on where they will provide the biggest return in terms of modal split increases, hence
tackling the problem of uncoordinated (or even ineffective) initiatives (Raffler et al. 2019).
When looking at latest research, a great number of hypotheses have been proven in order to assess the direction
and influence of determinants on active modal choice. Those can be roughly categorized into three groups of
influencing factors (Heinen et al. 2010):
1. determinants that can directly be influenced by planners: urban form, density, landuse mix and
infrastructure for active mobility (infrastructure type such as on- or off road cycling infrastructure, existing
infrastructure for motorized traffic and overall traffic organization)
2. determinants that can indirectly be influenced by planners: socioeconomic/sociodemographic mix in a city
or neighborhood depicting age, gender and income structures, predominant social and environmental
psychology such as social norms towards or against active mobility as well as social milieu mix which
largely constitutes on basis of the former factors
3. determinants that cannot be influenced by planners: Those are mostly geographical preconditions such as
climate, weather, topography which either limit or encourage walking and cycling (Raffler et al. 2019)
There have been intensive discussions on assumptions about the influence of compact and dense urban
structures, its landuse mix (Pucher and Buehler 2006) as well as microscale design of urban form (Rybarczyk
and Wu 2014). Although most research confirms the hypothesis that compact urban form (Saelens et al. 2003,
Pucher and Buehler 2006, Parkin et al. 2007b) and a heterogeneous landuse mix (Cervero and Duncan 2003)
encourages bicycle usage due to better accessibility and shorter trip length, there are also studies showing
insignificant results regarding density (Cervero and Duncan 2003, Winters et al. 2007).
Another core topic discussed by transport researchers and traffic planners concerns the best type of infrastructure
for active mobility, especially regarding the choice between different cycling infrastructures (off- on-road
cycleways and cyclepaths) (Garrard et al. 2008, Akar and Clifton 2009, Winters and Teschke 2010, Caulfield et
al. 2012). From a user perspective, infrastructure preferences vary among different groups of cyclists: For
example, Garrard et al. (2008) showed empirically that off-road cycling infrastructure is preferred by female
cyclists. Unlike for example Irish policy (Caulfield et al. 2012), Austrian cycling policy does not impose any
legally binding regulations regarding the type of infrastructure (BMLFUW 2015b). Yet Austrian planning
guidelines suggest using driving speeds and traffic volumes as parameters when deciding on cycling
infrastructure type (FSV 2019). However, in in real world planning processes the discussion frequently doesn’t
revolve around the type of infrastructure but whether to build any cycling infrastructure at all.
International research on the influence of social and environmental behavior comprises small-scale detailed
surveys on the relation between individual social background and attitudinal characteristics towards cycling (eg.
Guell et al. 2012, Souza et al. 2014). Another set of studies uses quantitative data at a larger scale in order to
investigate lifestyle types and their respective mobility behavior (van Acker 2015). In the Austrian context, the
latter approach has been complemented by the concept of SINUS social milieus which originated form market
research (Sinus Markt- und Sozialforschung GmbH 2019). As a theory-based construct, this approach clusters
society into different milieus according to personal attributes, attitudes, personal aims and the rejection of certain
goals in life (Dangschat et al. 2012). A German study investigated into the likelihood of riding a bicycle from the
perspective of 10 social milieus in 2017 (Sinus Markt- und Sozialforschung GmbH 2017a): The results show that
open-minded and financially well-off groups have a higher propensity to use the bicycle as traditional groups
and/or financially weak social milieus. In addition to that, the individual drivers for bicycle use differ among
groups. While open minded people use the bicycle for daily trips, the social milieu ‘performers’ cycle as outdoor
and leisure activity. Summing up, datasets on social milieus pose a new and promising way of incorporating
meaningful determinants for walking and cycling that previously have been neglected.
In contrast to cycling, papers on pedestrian traffic generally do not focus on planning support, rather they tend to
have a health science perspective (eg. Leslie et al. 2005; Cerin et al. 2009; Verhoeven et al. 2016). Hence they do
not explicitly propose results that are designed for the use in active planning processes; nevertheless they have an
indirect implication for planning activities.
From a methodological point of view, influencing factors can generally be identified by performing simple,
mono-causal correlational analyses (Leslie et al. 2005) or by setting up more sophisticated models using
regression techniques. There are two main approaches (Aoun et al. 2015; Parkin et al. 2007a):
1. Aggregated models estimate walking or cycling modal shares from census or survey data at the
administrative level of municipalities or origin-destination flows. Those models don’t reflect individual
behavior but investigate the impact of a local administrative area’s properties (infrastructural,
socioeconomic or social) on active mode shares. Most approaches achieve this by estimating the impact of
the respective municipal configurations applying slightly adapted OLS regression techniques as shown by
Rietveld and Daniel (2004) (2004), Parkin et al. (2007b), Vandenbulcke et al. (2008), Pucher and Buehler
(2006) and Cerin et al. (2009). Due to the aggregated perspective, those models are sometimes used in
strategic planning contexts. The models can then be used by planners and decision makers to assess the
impact of certain planning actions by consulting the raw model equation.
2. The second approach comprises disaggregate models which reflects the probability of choice to participate
in active mobility at the individual level. The individual’s preferences to walk or cycle are obtained by the
collection of data on stated- or revealed individual preference. For statistical modeling, mostly binary
logistic regression approaches are used. The practical application of these models is to explore and identify
individual properties (e.g. socioeconomic status) that influence active mode choice and therefore encourage
bicycle promotion among specific groups. For examples, see Wardman et al. (2007) or Heinen et al. (2013).
1.3. Knowledge gaps and practical problems
Regarding national and international research, our literature review revealed that there still exist three major
knowledge gaps relating to the application and extension of aggregated mode share models:
(1) As described above, a large amount of research focuses on decision support for bicycle planning and
therefore narrowing the view on active mobility which naturally includes pedestrian traffic. Hence existing
research should be extended beyond health science into transport research and planning in order to identify
possible countermeasures remedying declining pedestrian shares based on solid evidence (see 1.1: drop of
9.5% in Austrian pedestrian shares between 1995 and 2013/14).
(2) General critique on active mode share modelling approaches focuses on the lacking representation of so-
called ‘soft’ factors (in contrast to ‘hard’ factors, such as topography, infrastructure or accessibility). As
Heinen et al. (2010) point out with regard to poorly reflected psychological factors (eg. personal attitudes
towards active modes) we suggest to extend this critique to the omission of political/administrative
commitment factors as those are frequently cited as being crucial for a successful promotion of non-
motorized modes. This assumption is backed up by oral evidence sourced from local planning stakeholders
and therefore considered a relevant point of critique. Despite the efforts of preceding models to
investigate into the effects of “policy” (Rietveld and Daniel 2004; Pucher and Buehler 2006) with the help
of proxy-variables such as gasoline prices per litre, cycling fatality rate (Pucher and Buehler 2006),
parking costs, network speed or voter-proportion of certain political parties (Rietveld, 2004), research on
comprehensive proxy variables that reflect political will in a more realistic way is missing. While there is a
great number research investigating British, Dutch, Belgian or American contexts of active travel, there are
no such comprehensive models for Austria which potentially lowers the success rate of national planning
activities. In addition to that we intend shedding new light on the discussion of social attitudes as an
determinant of active mobility, as new datasets describing social milieus became available in Austria.
(3) Austrian national decision support approaches are currently somewhat limited both in their thematic and
spatial views on active mobility as there exist only two approaches in federal states Vorarlberg and Tirol
building upon accessibility analyses (Verracon GmbH 2016; Tyrolian Government 2014). Accessibility
may be one of the most important determinants (largely reflecting neighbourhood form and settlement
density) but it is safe to say that it doesn’t amount to the only relevant factor of cycling and walking.
Moreover, such mono-causal approaches may neglect other important (nested) co-influencing factors that
need to be addressed by evidence-based policy-making. This issue calls for novel approaches aiming at
supporting the national active mobility planning in a systematic and holistic manner. Precisely, there is a
lack of scientific evidence to prioritize investments for walking and cycling at the municipal level. A first
approach for investment prioritization has recently been presented for bicycle measures by Raffler et
al.(2019): Built on the hypothesis that investment in cycling is most expedient in areas where cycling is
least physically exhausting, a prioritization technique for investment into bicycle traffic based on regression
residuals has been presented. However, the fact that this approach only considers the physical determinants
of cycling (hilliness and/or distance) constitutes a research gap in Austrian decision support. Put differently,
mono-causal approaches need to be extended by including other determinants of active mobility.
1.4. Aim of this research: a deeper understanding of spatial variation of active travel
In face of the various challenges limiting success for active mobility planning in Austria (heterogeneous political
commitment, lack of knowledge about cause and effect patterns, uncoordinated actions), this paper aims at
providing the scientific basis in order to tackle some of these problems. At the same time we aim to shed light on
the internationally existing knowledge gaps (lacking consideration of walking, measurement and inclusion of
political/administrative commitment in aggregated mode choice models as well as their application in real-world
We build a comprehensive aggregated modeling framework for active travel modes (one each for walking and
cycling) with a spatial focus on Upper-Austrian municipalities. The models examine the cause and effect
patterns behind the regional variation of active travel shares by investigating the quantitative links between
active mobility and spatial, infrastructural and social influences. Based on a dedicated pool of hypotheses we
devote special attention to the transparent operationalization of influencing factors including new variables
reflecting local social milieus and political commitment to promote active mobility. As a complementary
analysis we correlate the proxy variables on political commitment with an index on self-assessed local
commitment (sourced from municipal administrations through an accompanying online-survey) in order to
quantitatively assess the relationship between subjective and objective willingness to support active travel.
With this we aim at answering questions such as whether or not there are widely applicable generic concepts for
increasing active modal shares or whether plans rather need to be custom-made for each municipality. In the
latter case we aim at guiding planning by identifying the most promising fields of action and target population
groups as well as estimating the potential effects of the planned measures in the respective contexts. Summing
up, this paper aims at (1) providing the first holistic evidence-based approach to aid active-mobility planners in
achieving the best outcome considering their somewhat limited budget, (2) contributing to the internationally
scarce research on the determinants of walking and (3) shedding light on the operationalization and use of proxy
variables operationalizing political commitment in aggregated models.
2. Data and Methods
2.1. Data
A crucial step predating the model building process is the choice and collection of appropriate data for the
aggregate mode choice models. The current section describes the details behind data collection and refinement
which includes the preparation of traffic survey data, conduction of a supplementary survey on self-evaluated
importance of active modes by municipal representatives (eg. mayors, administrative staff) and acquisition of
quantitative data describing influencing factors on active mode shares.
Traffic survey data:
In order to operationalize active modal shares at the local level of municipalities we first acquired data from the
traffic survey of the state of Upper Austria which was conducted in October 2012 (Government of Upper Austria
2014). Although this decision narrows the spatial focus of our research through the exclusion of the other eight
federal states from the analysis, Upper Austria is one of the few states that features nearly every element of the
heterogeneous Austrian spatial structure (eg. alpine regions as well as rural forests, hills, urban and semi-urban
zones) and provides a reasonable sample-size of municipalities. Also Upper Austria currently holds a unique
position as it is the only Austrian federal state to provide complete data on modal shares on the municipality
Modal shares for a total N of 444 municipalities are based on person-specific trips (specified by mode and trip
purpose): numbers of trips were projected and statistically weighted in order to correct for sample bias. Active
mode shares were calculated as the respective proportions of walking and cycling trips and the total number of
reported trips per municipality. In order to secure a sound 95% confidence interval of the modal shares, we
excluded municipalities where the number of interviewed persons was less than 200. (see Table 1, filtered).
Also, we used the unweighted number of reported trips to weight cases (municipalities) when calibrating the
regression models so to give relatively more weight to more robust values in the outcome variable. Those actions
do not harm the models’ representativeness but rather remove modal share values based on a weak empirical
foundation. Related issues pertaining to the confidence levels of the non-motorized modal shares impeded a
further differentiation of the models in terms of trip-purposes. Though initially planned this would have asked
for substantially larger sample sizes of the mobility survey and was therefore skipped. The descriptive statistics
presented in table 1 show that Upper Austrian walking shares at the municipality level are considerably larger
than cycling shares.
Table 1. Descriptive variables of the Upper-Austrian active mode shares by municipality
N [municipalities]
mean [%]
min [%]
SD [%]
Walking and cycling shares range between 0.7% and 32% and 0% and 21%, respectively. They exhibit a
substantial right skew resulting from a far from normal distribution
. Removing municipalities with less than 200
surveyed persons reduces N by 106 while slightly increasing the mean values for both modes. Also, some of the
extreme values on the outer limits of the distribution have been excluded due to the filtering. Following the trend
in the national travel survey, walking shares in Upper Austria are generally higher than cycling shares (no zero-
share municipalities, higher maximum and mean values) but feature a similar statistical distribution.
Datasets on active travel determinants:
Alongside these traffic and survey data, numerous additional data sources have been tapped in order to form
model covariates describing local spatial, infrastructural and socioeconomic properties. Datasets range from
spatial information from the national Graph-Integration-Platform (GIP) and OpenStreetMap (OSM), digital
elevation models and population density rasters, demographic and socioeconomic data by Statistics Austria as
well as data on social milieus from INTEGRAL Markt- und Meinungsforschung. Weather and climate-related
information was sourced from ZAMG (Zentralanstalt für Meteorologie und Geodynamik). Some data was
directly obtained from the thriving Austrian OpenData initiative ( or representatives of the Upper
Austrian state administration.
Supplementary survey on political will:
Pertaining to defining proxy variables reflecting political commitment towards active mobility within a model
framework we conducted an online survey among Upper Austrian administration representatives on the
municipal level. The survey aimed at collecting the local importance of bicycle traffic by self-assessing
questions like ‘How important is bicycle traffic for your municipality?’, or Is there a dedicated budget for
bicycle infrastructure?’ following a simple grading system. Owing to the thematic focus of the Upper Austrian
provincial government the survey had a focus on cycling. The collected data resemble an empirical picture of the
perceived preconditions and self-assessed efforts related to actions to promote cycling. In order to increase the
response rate the web link for participating in the survey was distributed by a well-known sender (Government
of Upper Austria) to all 444 municipalities shortly after the Summit for Cycling event in Linz, Upper Austria.
The relatively high response rate of 54 percent (242 cases) proves that this approach has been successful.
However, it was not possible to directly include the survey results in the statistical models due to the missing
2.2. Methods
Our research approach was guided by structuring the model building procedure in five major steps (see fig. 2).
Driven by literature, we first (1) specified three groups of influences that are known to have an effect on non-
motorized modal choice: spatial, environmental and climate, infrastructural and demographic/socioeconomic
(including commitment of the communal decision-makers) influences, hence to manage and structure a
potentially vast amount of covariates. In a second step (2), we formulated hypotheses on the expected impact
direction and strength of theoretical indicators that could be assigned to one of the three factor groups. The third
working step (3) was focused on the operationalization (data acquisition, geospatial and mathematical modelling,
econometric techniques) of the variables that built upon the data sources in the previous section. Figure 3 lists
the main highlights of the third working steps output variables. The fourth and last step of analysis (4)
constituted the statistical inference process and the formulation of multivariate regression models to predict non-
motorized modal shares as the outcome variable on the municipality scale.
While building the statistical models (see figure 3), we conducted a supplementary work-step (5) measuring the
correlational relationship between the proxy variables reflecting political and administrative commitment and an
affinity index (affinity to promote cycling) constructed from various items included in the above self-assessment
The mean modal shares among Upper Austrian municipalities should not be mixed up with the overall Upper Austrian shares which
amount to 14.6% for walking and 5.1% for cycling, respectively.
municipality survey. This was done in order to safeguard the relevance and adequacy of the selected proxy
The following section gives a brief overview by determinant category over the 700+ variables that were gathered
and computed. We will describe variables listed in figure 3 in more detail as those were built devoting advanced
methodological attention in ways not yet presented by international research on active mode share modeling. The
main tools that were applied in the variable-forming process include GIS (ArcGIS, QGIS and PostGIS) as well
as the statistical software package SPSS for the data management, processing, testing and inferencing model
Fig. 3 Overview of model building workflow
Spatial and environmental determinants:
When looking at the variable configurations of existing research, spatial and environmental determinants have
always been a core element when investigating active mode choice (eg. Parkin et al. 2007b; Vandenbulcke et al.
2008). This group of factors includes determinants that can be characterized as slow-changing factors: settlement
structure and various ‘static’ environmental characteristics that cannot directly be influence by planners (relief,
climate). Secondly, a broad set of accessibility indicators resembling determinants that can be (directly or
indirectly) influenced by planning decisions:
(1) The calculation concept for the accessibility covariates follows an extended version of the density-based
intra-zonal and external distance estimation approach by Kordi et al. (2012): Local/regional walking,
cycling and driving distances and times from the cells of a 250m population density grid to different
categories of trip destinations (e.g. health services, social infrastructure, shopping) were computed using
network analysis. In order to obtain a single aggregated accessibility value per municipality we used the
population of the origin raster for the calculation of a weighted mean of all possible route configurations in
a municipality. The population density raster provides the necessary information for the calculation of a so
called degree of affectedness (DOA) of municipal population by mode specific accessibilities (see fig. 2)
and was also utilized for other environmental variables.
(2) The second focus of the accessibility analysis was the reflection of mode specific characteristics of
accessibility. Our approach integrates attributes from different data sources (number of lanes, lane-speed,
cycling-infrastructure from GIP and OSM). To further reflect realistic impedance for both active modes in
an alpine country like Austria, we considered street-slopes according to a 10m digital elevation model that
was geographically matched to the street network. We calculated the arithmetic ratios between non-
motorized travel time and its motorized counterpart in order to realistically capture the rationale behind
travel-time acceptance for motorized households. Due to limited degree of data completion in the Austrian
road graph at the time of writing this paper, it was not possible to include detailed information about
different types of cycling infrastructures, such as off- or on-road cycling infrastructures and cyclepaths.
Instead, a classification of graph edges was conducted in order to distinguish between edges that are
especially suitable for cycling (low velocity, declared as bicycle infrastructure in either OSM or GIP) and
edges where motorized traffic is dominating. By calculating the proportion of suitable cycling infrastructure
along the shortest paths in the accessibility analysis, it was possible to account for the local infrastructural
situation despite being limited from the data perspective. Access to public transport was operationalized by
calculating the mean distances to stations by using raster based cost-path analysis. This type of routing
algorithm works with traversable raster surfaces rather than road graphs. The choice for this approach was
specifically related to the fact that a traversable raster surface is more suitable to model the walking or
biking accessibility to public transport: They better reflect the nature of a pedestrian’s pathfinding to
stations as routing is not bound to discrete graph-edges.
(3) Weights were attached to the trip-destinations of routes in order to take into account the relative importance
of a destination (visiting frequencies for doctors, hospitals, pharmacies, schools, grocery stores,
supermarkets, administrative facilities) and size of their target groups. This was accomplished by adding a
literature-based list of demand factors and empirical findings on target groups.
(4) Approaches related to the above step (1) of the accessibility analysis were applied for the operationalization
of environmental variables. Examples are determinants that reflect climate (e.g. number of snow cover
days, frost, etc.) or topography as a DOA of local population. Although topography is considered as a
negative impedance in active travel especially in cycling (Raffler et al. 2019) it can also be interpreted
as scenically valuable. We therefore included measures by applying state-of-the-art slope- and ruggedness-
index analysis through the use of GDAL algorithms.
Infrastructural determinants:
Determinants reflecting infrastructural conditions play a crucial role in this research, as they can be directly
addressed by planning actions and local/regional development plans. We calculated measures describing the
local topology of the road network following the approach of Tresidder (2005): Those are represented by
municipal Intersection Density (arithmetic ratio between connecting nodes and the total municipal network
length/settlement area) as well as the Connected Node Ratio (arithmetic ratio between the number of connecting
nodes and all network-nodes in a municipality). Those variables describe the permeability of the municipal road
network as these can influence the enjoyment and comfort of local active trips through more direct routes.
Walkability and bikeability reflect mode-specific time advantages as well as the convenience and scenic quality
of cycling routes. In order to operationalize these features we included the density of cycle tracks, the share of
traffic-calmed streets or the density of traffic accident hotspots at the road graph level. This was particularly
challenging as the data sources GIP and OSM comprised unstable and incomplete information on cycling and
walking infrastructure at the time of the data acquisition.
Demographic and socioeconomic factors and political/administrative commitment:
Demographic and socioeconomic factors have frequently been a major point of discussion in the context of
research on non-motorized traffic (Goodman 2013; Heinen et al, 2010). Therefore we extracted several variables
from census-based surveys which include aggregate measures on demographic structures, household structure
(eg. mean household size), age groups, education, car ownership or purchase power per person/household. A
more sophisticated view on local mind sets was provided by variables on social milieus (local shares of SINUS-
milieu groups) that cluster population according to lifestyles and attitudes (milieus include conservatives,
hedonists, or performers, etc.). In the specific context of this research, we aimed at extending the existing efforts
of operationalization of the local active travel mode culture and the local commitment to support active modes
among decision-makers. One approach consisted of collecting information on the municipality’s membership in
federal or state-level initiatives such as at the Upper Austrian cycling promotion programme
(, bicycle coaching initiative for municipalities), Klimabündnis Austria (an organisation
promoting climate protection) or the number of projects realized in the Klima-aktiv programme (climate
protection initiative of the Austrian BMLFUW). This information was used to calculate workable variables such
as number of years since first assignment or simple 0/1 dummy variables. A second approach was based on
including election results on municipal and state level elections. In this context it shall be noted that past political
commitment may have implicitly manifested itself in kind of actually realized infrastructure projects or
awareness-raising projects in favour of active travel modes whereas the above variables describe the current
local ‘climate’ for active travel modes and potential for its promotion in the near future.
Regression model
We derived multivariate regression models aiming at identifying the relative importance of the determinants on
the spatial variation of both active travel modes at the scale of Upper Austrian municipalities. The outcome
variable (share of walking/cycling trips in all trips in a municipality) and the regression coefficients comprise the
matrix of the municipalities’ characteristics in the independent variables or covariates. The final set of
independent variables was derived iteratively from a pool of 700+ candidate variables adopting a hierarchical
scheme of model selection and a set of complementary tests and procedures. As sample size is relatively small
(338 municipalities after applying the filter) the possible number of predictor variables is somewhat limited.
However, with up to 17 variables in the pedestrian model and up to 22 predictor variables in the bicycle model,
the upper value following Green (1991) in minimum sample size is 234, which is well exceeded. As a guiding
principle we were aiming at combining several individual variables to form combined indicators (eg. the
composite accessibility or landscape scenic quality variables) wherever feasible in order to reduce the number of
covariates while increasing their explanatory power. Starting off by testing the inclusion of a basic set
determinants (largely based on previous research) which were force-entered into the regression model we
continued to include thematic sets of additional variables in stepwise modes (both backward and forward) in
order to check for incremental improvements by adding new predictors to the equation. Each step was checked
in terms of theoretical plausibility and accompanied by applying statistical tests (e.g. checking for
multicollinearity or suppressor effects) so not to leave crucial modelling decisions to purely statistical criteria or
let them be unduly influenced by random sampling variation. To quote and example some variables on adverse
weather conditions (eg. number of frost days or rain days) had to be removed from the models as they exhibited
considerable correlation with each other. For each model variant we tested for autocorrelation (independent
errors) and heteroscedasticity both tests signalized their absence.
3. Results
Table 2 and 3 show the main statistical results for the pedestrian and cycling models. The outcome variable is the
respective modal share in Upper Austrian municipalities. The determinant variables are labelled according to
their respective factor group (see 2.2) by prefixes ENV, INF or POP, respectively. It shall be noted that while
from a planner’s viewpoint the focus is clearly on variables that can actually be influenced by planning actions
(e.g. relating to infrastructure, behaviour, awareness) it is nonetheless crucial to include other variables in order
to cover all relevant determinants as comprehensive as possible and to control for the respective effects while
explaining the corresponding variance proportions in the regression outcome variable. Omitting these controlling
covariates one would run the risk of falsely attributing non-related parts of variance in outcome y to planning-
relevant variables while they are in fact due to other factors (potentially non-controllable by planners such as
weather or topology). In order to duly compare the effects of individual determinants on active mobility shares
one should consult column β containing the standardized coefficients.
Pedestrian Model
Overall, the model on walking shares explains 77.5% of the variance in pedestrian shares among Upper Austrian
communities (R2=0.775). The large positive value for the composite variable on walking accessibility to various
POIs confirms the hypothesis that compact settlement structures and relative proximity to basic amenities is a
key requisite for walking (ENV_composite_acc_pot_walking). This is also partially reflected by the effect of
‘INF_share_urban_environment’ expressing the share of land use category ‘urban’ along the municipal road
network indicating that denser environments are in general more pedestrian-friendly. In a similar vein the share
of out-commuters in the local workforce exhibits a negative effect of walking shares. The positive sign of the
climate variable ‘ENV_no_snow_cover_days’ indicates a potential swap of modal choice during the snowy
season as the same variable shows a negative sign in the cycling model. A part of regular cyclists is switching to
walking mode in case weather conditions appear unsafe or discomforting for cycling. With respect to policy
relevant factors the weighted (according to type of PT) distance to public transport access points is an important
predictor suggesting that the availability of adequate public transport is encouraging walking when controlling
for other relevant factors.
Table 2. Pedestrian model coefficients, standardized coefficients, t-statistic, significance and
correlation with pedestrian share (**p<.001, *p<.005)
correlation with y
ENV_landscape_scenic score
With respect to population and political/administrative commitment it can be concluded that certain features of
the local population (such as relatively high shares of both older and young people; ‘POP_share_pop_o_65y’ and
‘POP_share_pop_u_15y’) as well as relative high shares of specific social milieus (adaptive pragmatic, post-
materialistic or traditional) contribute to walking. In general terms milieu variables tend to have a substantial
explanatory power for walking shares. To a slightly lesser degree the same is true for the proxy variables
reflecting political and administrative commitment at the municipal level (POP_no_klimaaktiv_pop’,
‘POP_dummy_klimabuendnis’). Finally, the relative probability of accidents and the share of third-level
education in the local population have negative effects on walking shares while a high share of part-time
employment among the male workforce is positively impacting walking shares. Those findings are in line with
theoretical considerations (in particular when controlling for social milieus).
Note that some variables show a reversed sign in the regression model compared to the direct (zero-order)
correlation with the outcome variable. While this could be a potential causer for concern, it can be made
plausible by considering that the inclusion of other predictors controls for several effects that are confounded in a
zero-order correlation but split across dedicated covariates once they are included in the model. To quote an
example, the share of tertiary-level education among the local population has a positive zero-order correlation
with walking shares. However, once we control for attitudinal features through the inclusion of social milieu
variables (‘POP_share_milieu, etc.) the impact of high education levels on walking shares reverses. By contrast,
traditional milieu shares are over-represented in settlement structures typically associated with low walking
shares (suburban regions, regions with agricultural land use, etc.). Once some of these effects are controlled for
(through the inclusion of composite accessibility variables), the model results show that other things being
equal attracting traditional population will actually help increasing the local pedestrian share.
Cycling Model
In total the model includes 22 predictors accounts for 71.9% of the cycling share among the municipalities
(R2=0.719). Like in the pedestrian model we included various variables controlling for static influencing factors
having substantial impact on cycling shares. As expected, negative impacts originate from hilliness within
settlement areas as well as the number of days with snow cover, which confirms the hypothesis on positive
influences on pedestrian shares when it is snowing. The scenic quality along the road
(variable‘INF_pleasant_green_roadside’) has a positive impact on cycling modal shares: this composite variable
measures the share of certain land-use categories that have been considered attractive along the road network.
High positive beta-values are displayed for the accessibility variables ENV_ratio_accessibility_pot_cycle_car
and ‘ENV_ratio_accessibility_prim_schools_walk_car’ reflecting the weighted POI-related accessibility ratios
between cycling and motorized traffic as well as the bikeability along routes to schools. This poses a strong
statement for urban planners: Better accessibility ratio and bicycle-friendly environments play key roles when
aimaing at a modal shift in favour of cycling traffic.
As expected, variables typically associated with conflicts between cyclists and motorized road users (eg.
INF_density_accident_hotspot’) or the prevalence of car-centred infrastructure
(‘INF_dummy_highway_access, INF_share_roads_GT_60kmh) indicate negative influences whereas the
provision of stationary cycling infrastructure generally encourages people to cycle
(INF_bike_racks_per_1000_pop). In this context the sign of the distance to highway access
(‘INF_minimum_distance_highway’) was not expected initially. However, on second thought this relationship
matches with properties of remote regions that are highly dependent on car while typically having bad cycling
accessibility. They therefore pose impedances to cyclists reflected by this measure of remoteness. Similarly to
the pedestrian model, the municipal share of out-commuters has a negative effect on cycling shares.
Table 3. Cycling model coefficients, standardized coefficients, t-statistic, significance and
correlation with cycling share (**p<.001, *p<.005)
correlation with y
In terms of attitudinal variables ‘POP_share_milieu_established (local population share of social milieu
established) and POP_share_milieu_performer’ (local population share of social milieu perfomers) have the
most significant effects on cycling shares. On average approximately 10% of the Austrian population belong to
the social milieu established. It represents the performance-oriented and success-oriented elite in middle age
groups. With other effects being controlled for in the model, a 1% increase of established milieu among the total
local population will increase the municipality’s cycling share by approx. 0.3%. Performers being the younger
part of the elite can be broadly characterized as being globally oriented, highly efficient, success-oriented with
comprehensive skills in IT and business (making up approx. 9% of the Austrian population). Model results
indicate that a 1% increase in performers population share will reduce the cycling share by -0.6%. Note that the
zero-order correlations with y show reverse signs for both milieus. This is again due to the inclusion of other
factors which explain large parts of the variance in cycling. Hence the milieu population shares explain unique
parts of the variance. Our interpretation is that both milieus share specific patterns of other mobility relevant
factors such as choice of residential location or purchase power. Once these variables are controlled for and the
other factors are kept constant, the coefficients for the milieu variables express the respective net effects while
other things are being equal. While performers have a tendency towards high performance recreational sports
they do not have environmentally conscious or cost-conscious mind-sets when it comes to everyday mobility
(Dangschat et al. 2012). German studies by Sinus Markt- und Sozialforschung GmbH (2017b) found similar
patterns of bicycle usage in the milieus of performers. Hence we even expect rebound effects on active travel
shares to be related with performers’ recreational behaviour (e.g. using the car to go to cycle routes). In Upper
Austria, established milieu shares are over-represented in settlement structures typically associated with low
cycling shares (suburban regions, regions with some agricultural land use, etc.). Also they exhibit above average
household sizes generally associated with below average cycling shares as well as above average income levels
and purchase power. Once we control for some of these effects, the model results show that attracting
established population will help increase the local cycling share.
The covariates on political and administrative commitment remaining in the model are
POP_dummy_klimabuendnis’ (1 if the municipality is a member of Klimabündis Austria, 0 otherwise) and
POP_years_participation_fahradberatung the number of years since the municipality first enrolled to the programme are significant in the model context and the related coefficients generally suggest
that political/administrative commitment in favour of cycling has a positive effect on the modal spilt share of
cycling trips. More specifically, for every year since the first enrolment to the municipality
gains a 0.11% increase in cycling share, i.e. after approx. 9 years of taking part in the initiative the cycling share
will increase by 1%. Given that the average municipal cycling share is at some 3.5% proves that the programme
does have an impact. In a similar fashion the enrolment to Klimabündnis will increase the cycling share by
0.22% constituting a one-time effect. It needs to be stressed here that these figures are incremental meaning that
they reflect the net effect of the respective predictor while all other variables are kept constant. In this sense
supporting planning actions affecting any of the other thematic areas will add up to a more pronounced increase
in cycling modal share.
Regarding the former, we tested additional variables for inclusion before committing to the final variant of the
model: the number of Klima-aktiv supported projects in the walking/cycling domain positively correlates with y
(number of projects: +0.144, no. of projects by municipal area: +0.267, both correlations are significant at a level
of 0.001). The subjective evaluation of the state administration on the municipal level of pro-cycling activity (on
a scale between 0 and 3; 3 is best) proved to be positively correlated with y (+0.226, significant at a level of
0.001). However, when controlling for the many other determinants affecting cycling modal shares those
variables turned out not to be significant in the regression model and have consequently been excluded.
Complementary analysis: correlation between subjective and objective commitment towards cycling
In order to deepen the analysis of proxy variables depicting commitment towards cycling among local political
or administrative representatives we analysed whether or not there is a correlation with the self-assessment of
these stakeholder groups. We used the surveys response data (see 2.1) for the calculation of a summed affinity
index of self-assessed political willingness to promote cycling. To solve the question whether the included proxy
variables (eg. POP_years_participation_fahrradberatung’) actually reflect the self-stated commitment, we
applied correlation analyses between the above affinity index and the model proxy variables as well as the
cycling modal share (s. table 4)
. The resulting correlation coefficients are highly significant. The medium-sized
correlation (R=0.448) between cycling modal share and the affinity index underlines both the introducing
statement by Raffler et al.(2019) and the findings of the cycling model: A strong political or administrative
commitment towards cycling is key to achieve high local cycling shares; however it is not the only relevant
factor. This is also emphasized by the model outputs (see table 3) which list the proxy variables as relevant
determinants among other factors.
Table 4. Pearson correlation [R] between proxies and stated-political willingness
Affinity to cycling
Cycling modal share
Number of Klimaaktiv mobil Projects
Years since 1st enrolment in
Years since 1st enrolment in Klimabündnis
Further inspection of table 4 shows that there exists significant (p < 0.001) medium to high positive correlations
between the proxy variables and the surveyed affinity values. Bearing in mind that the affinity index is a highly
subjective measure, the strength of the relationship with the proxy variables (being based on objective data) is
quite high. This indicates that measurable variables such as enrolment in federal cycling promotion programs
actually reflect the self-assessed political will to promote cycling which is an argument in favor of calculating
meaningful proxy variables using existing data sources and including them in aggregated models.
Decision support and measure simulation
Our research is guided by aiming at outcomes that can actually be implemented in planning processes and
agenda setting. Thus we need to come up with approaches dedicated to translating raw statistical model results
into planning practice. As a first component of a decision support system for the Upper Austrian federal state
government we developed ‘active travel potential maps’ such as presented in figure 3 for pedestrian traffic.
Methodologically these maps are based on analysing the model residuals produced by the above aggregate
Due to the missing state wide coverage of the municipality survey it was not possible to directly test the affinity index in the context of the
cycling model.
models. As not the whole variance in modal shares could be accounted for in the models (and hence by the
covariates included therein) there are model residuals: a positive residual indicates that the subject municipality
has a higher modal share than expected given the local premises (environmental, infrastructural, social &
attitudinal, etc.). Reversely, a negative residual can be found in areas that could potentially achieve higher active
modal shares if they made best use of the local conditions. Put differently, they underachieve when it comes to
active mobility. As a planning tool the maps are currently being used as a means to support strategic decisions
related to the extension of the Upper Austrian cycling promotion programme
Fig. 4. Map of walking-model residuals and their statistical and spatial distribution
Negative residuals = large unused walking-potential | Positive residuals = best use of local walking conditions
From a planning perspective the areas displayed in red mark target municipalities that are likely to produce the
highest return on investment in terms of pedestrian modal shares while municipalities displayed in blue mark
target regions with a potential to balance out Upper Austrian disparities in walking shares (however, at the price
of reduced incremental return of investment). However, the actual choice of investment strategy is ultimately a
political matter rather than a scientific one: Both options are equally viable and highly dependent on the
respective political agenda. In this context we see two critical questions that need to be answered by decision
makers on the federal state level:
1. Should overall active shares of municipalities be levelled out among all communities?
2. Should measures to boost active shares focus on municipalities that already implemented a thriving
culture of walking and/or cycling?
The first option means investing in underperforming municipalities displayed in blue with a potential to balance
out Upper Austrian disparities in walking shares. Those municipalities exhibit lower walking shares than could
be expected when fully utilizing their respective local conditions (infrastructure, population, topography and
climate). In case decision makers choose to follow the second strategy, the recommendation is to invest in areas
displayed in red. Target municipalities are likely to produce the highest return on investment in terms of
pedestrian modal shares by building on an already established culture of active mobility.
Those strategic decisions pose a new scope for Austrian decision makers as quantitative measures of
municipality performance in the context of modal choice by means of statistical modelling haven't yet been
applied in Austrian active mobility planning. A second element of supporting decisions in active travel planning
comprises the simulation of potential measures in terms of their expected impact on pedestrian or cycling modal
shares prior to their implementation. This can support planning, e.g. by prioritizing potential measures subject to
their impact or target achievement. Measure simulation is methodically facilitated by using the above models,
adequately interpreting coefficients and entering modified values (according to the planning measure to be
assessed) into the model equations. It should be noted however, that the measurement scale and dimensionality
of the covariates as well as whether or not they are composite variables largely determine the way model
coefficients need be interpreted in this context. Single variables measured on a metric percentage scale are most
straightforward in terms of interpretation whereas composite variables or non-dimensional measurement scales
require some preparatory work when simulating planning actions. To quote an example, increasing the number
of bike racks at rail stations by 10 per 1000 inhabitants (currently amounting to a mean of 5 per 1000 inhabitants
in Upper Austrian municipalities) will increase the cycling modal share by 0.17% (amounting to approx. 3.5%
for the average Upper Austrian municipality) while other things are kept equal. Cutting the density of accident
hotspots in half (e.g. by investing in construction measures to defuse accident accumulation points) will increase
the cycling modal share by 0.22%. With regards to walking, the significance of interdepartmental action
becomes apparent, particularly relating to policies that affect the composition of the local population: Increasing
the share of post-materialists in the local population (e.g. by specifically attracting respective households through
housing schemes, city marketing, etc.) by 10% will increase the pedestrian modal split by 1.1%. Increasing the
population share of children below 15 years increases the walking share by 0.28%. By quoting these examples of
cross-sectoral planning measures we aim at pointing out that influencing modal shares is by far not limited to
traditional measures usually concerning infrastructure or accessibility, but can also be implicitly facilitated to a
great extent by the composition of the local population (which again is subject to the municipalities'
attractiveness for certain groups). The local share of part-time working relationships among employed men has a
positive impact on walking shares: increasing the share of this kind of jobs by 1% (e.g. by attracting appropriate
businesses, introducing new worktime schemes or attracting certain lifestyle types) walking shares increase by
0.17%. A potential explanation for this is the better temporal affordability for 'slower' modes of transport. As
another example, the composite walking accessibility variable coefficient can be generally interpreted as
increasing walking accessibility to relevant destinations will boost walking modal shares. However, since the
measurement scale is non-dimensional the exact impact simulation of improving accessibility needs to be based
on a re-calculation of the respective indicators after changing the path network and / or its attributes reflecting
the respective measures in the GIS model in a case-by-case fashion.
4. Conclusions and outlook
At this stage our work has demonstrated that aggregated statistical models for active travel modes are
methodologically feasible and that data-driven methods can actually be used to support planning and agenda
setting. First results prove that a considerable proportion of the observed variation in walking and cycling modal
shares can be explained by multivariate regression models including on a comprehensive set of covariates. In
accordance with the aims set in section 1.4, the added value of our research lies in the following results: (1) A
systematic approach to model active mode shares on a municipal level in Austria, therefore laying the
foundations for evidence-based decision making in walking and cycling domains as well as in other sectors with
relevance to mobility patterns; (2) Presentation of determinants on pedestrian modal shares, their strength and
direction of impact, in the context of transport planning; (3) The operationalization of proxy variables reflecting
the political will to promote cycling more realistically as well as the assessment of the correlational relationship
between those proxy variables with an affinity index generated from empirical data.
That being said, we are aware that considerable research tasks lie ahead. Aiming at making our approach highly
relevant for practical planning, widening its scope of application and improving the reliability of the model
results future research threads include both methodological aspects and developing implementation tools,
respectively. In terms of improving the models we aim at including additional predictor variables by forming
composite variables or factors, including data to operationalize on- and off road cycling infrastructure. Another
research goal lies in including non-linearity and saturation effects as well as in adding variables on
infrastructural qualities that were unavailable at the time of building the models. Broadening the statistical basis
by re-calibrating the model with data from other regions, both national and international (facilitated by a
dedicated data interoperability concept) is regarded key in terms of making the model results even more
generalizable and robust. In terms of transferring model results into planning practice we aim at developing a set
of tools including an expert system in order to make our approach workable for external experts in the planning
domain. This includes various interfaces for planning-relevant model input data as well as coherent ways of
presenting model outputs to the target groups.
This research was conducted in the framework of the ACTIV8! Project ('Aktive Mobilität effizient fördern‘) co-
financed under the Mobilität der Zukunft programme, ‚Personenmobilität innovativ gestalten,
Verkehrsinfrastruktur gemeinsam entwickeln’ (4th call). The authors are also grateful to the Office of the State
Government of Upper Austria, in particular to the Cycling Officer at the Department of the Overall Traffic
Planning and Public Transport, Christian Hummer for providing good advice and hard-to-find datasets as well as
for support during the survey. In addition we would like to thank the promoters of Radgipfel 2016, 2017,
Radvernetzungstreffen, AG Radbeauftragte and REAL CORP Conference 2017. Finally we thank Martin Eder
(BMLFUW), Holger Heinfellner (Umweltbundesamt) and Michael Bürger (Klimabündnis Tirol) for event
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... This is not a new concern. Other researchers have already identified this issue and proposed their own data-driven models (Hackl et al., 2019). While new tools and models for planning and assessing active mobility are always welcome, they often have their downsides and may be too complicated, dependent on inaccessible data, and not particularly interactive or flexible. ...
... While new tools and models for planning and assessing active mobility are always welcome, they often have their downsides and may be too complicated, dependent on inaccessible data, and not particularly interactive or flexible. In their data-driven model developed as a response to the lack of evidence-based decision making in planning, (Hackl et al., 2019) use a variety of data sources to simulate incremental effects of individual planning measures. However, the current model is dependent on Austrian data sources and more work needs to be done to transfer it to planning practice. ...
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Our transport system is both an enabler and a threat to sustainable development in cities. While providing opportunities and prosperity, urban transportation is accompanied by severe consequences such as land seizure, global warming, and pollution. There is increasing awareness that travel demand is a derived phenomenon, and land-use patterns strongly influence our daily mobility choice. The concept of accessibility is promising by providing a holistic framework to interrelate transport with land-use. More than any other form of transport, active mobility (e.g., walking and cycling) de- pends on high local accessibility to destinations. Therefore, emerging ideas, such as the 15-Minute City propagate high proximity to destinations and the provision of ap- propriate infrastructure. Accessibility instruments function as a specialized Planning Support System (PSS) and can create high value for planning practice when shaping sustainable cities. However, research has shown that accessibility instruments are rarely adopted in practice. In addition to institutional barriers, it was found that accessibility instruments still do not meet expectations in practice, and the availability of data and resources remains an open concern. Therefore, this dissertation presents a novel accessibility instrument called Geo Open Accessibility Tool (GOAT) that focuses on active mobility and local accessibility. It is a web-based tool combining different web and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technologies and was developed in a co-creative and iterative process. The instrument is developed open source and was applied in numerous German and international case studies. The tool requirements were derived by exploring the existing tool landscape through testing and literature review of 26 accessibility instruments. Accessibility instruments have undergone significant developments in the last few years. Improvements in GIS, new web technologies, and the rising availability of (open) data have facilitated the fast development of these new tools. Nevertheless, the review still identified a lack of open source and transferable instruments that allow on-the-fly scenario building while focusing on active mobility. Furthermore, a clear gap was identified between fully-featured proprietary desktop and (open) web tools. Therefore, by focusing on an open, interactive, and transferable web tool, the typical shortcomings of existing accessibility instruments were addressed during the development of GOAT. One focus was developing data strategies to enable powerful and affordable accessibility instruments. A novel population disaggregation procedure was developed that produces population data on the building access level with low data requirements. Furthermore, Point of Interest (POI) data originating from OpenStreetMap (OSM) was refined and fused with additional data sets. In addition, data was contributed to OSM through different means, such as mapping events with volunteers and a mapping mode in GOAT. The different data strategies made it possible to apply the tool in practice. Finally, the usefulness of GOAT in practice was studied. In particular, the tool was used for real-world planning questions and assessed by 42 planning professionals in workshops. Four core use cases were identified and users appreciated the tool’s interactivity and easy-to-use interface. However, further improvements to the tool are necessary, including enhancing the implemented indicators, increasing its usability and integrating it with existing GIS software. The developed tool offers a valuable contribution to the landscape of accessibility instruments. It is recommended that future research focus on the open technical challenges that GOAT and other accessibility instruments still face. Furthermore, tool developers should strive for continuous exchange with the planning practice to meet real-world requirements, support teaching accessibility, and aim to use accessibility for sustainable development.
... Many studies have been conducted to better understand active mobility as a transportation mode choice (Hackl et al., 2019;Koszowski et al., 2019;Markvica et al., 2020;Pisoni et al., 2022). Some have shown that safety is critical when deciding to use active modes over short distances and that safety concerns may be the most significant barrier to higher use of active mobility. ...
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The rise in automobiles within rapidly developing nations in Sub-Saharan Africa necessitates the exploration of sustainable transportation alternatives, especially in urban regions. Walking and cycling are essential active modes of transport that can improve city residents' well-being and economic vitality. However, their adoption as mobility choices depends on infrastructure limitations and residents' perception of their safety. This study investigates the impact of socio-demographic and neighborhood characteristics on the safety perception of active mobility within the Accra metropolis of Ghana. The study utilized survey data on residents' mobility habits and willingness to use active transport modes for daily commutes. Most of the respondents are permanent residents of Accra, and 51% are between 18-35 years old. The developed random parameter ordered logit model reveals that the perception of safety varies across the population and is influenced by respondents' demographic characteristics and neighborhood configuration. Notably, factors related to walking duration to bus stops, income level, and household size, unplanned neighborhoods, among others, decrease residents' safety perception of active mobility. The study offers valuable insights that can aid in planning future urban active mobility systems in Accra to establish safer and more sustainable transportation choices for the city's residents.
... Neben Maßnahmen in Bezug auf andere Verkehrsteilnehmer*innen empfanden die Kinder ihre Umgebung als eher fahrradunfreundlich, vor allem aufgrund der unzureichend ausgebauten Infrastruktur, welche sich im schlechten Zustand von Fahrradwegen und nicht klar abgetrennten Fahrradwegen manifestiert. Durch Ausbesserung dieser fußgänger-und fahrradunfreundlichen Infrastruktur könnten auch Weglängenund Zeitvorteile für aktive Verkehrsteilnehmer*innen ermöglicht werden, beispielsweise durch die damit verbundene Verkürzung der Wege und weniger Wartezeit an Straßenampeln (Hackl et al. 2019;Landwehr und Kolip 2021). Die Sicherheit auf dem Schulweg, beispielsweise durch eine ausreichende Beleuchtung, ist ein wichtiger Faktor für die eigenständige Mobilität von Kindern (Carver et al. 2014). ...
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Zusammenfassung Nur wenige Kinder erreichen die Bewegungsempfehlungen der Weltgesundheitsorganisation und profitieren von den gesundheitlichen Effekten der körperlichen Aktivität. Die Förderung nicht-organisierter Bewegungsaktivitäten, wie die aktive und eigenständige Mobilität, ist ein relevanter Ansatzpunkt für Interventionen zur Bewegungsförderung bei Kindern im Grundschulalter. Ziel der vorliegenden Studie war es, hinderliche und förderliche Faktoren für die eigenständige und aktive Mobilität auf dem Schulweg zu identifizieren, aus welchen geeignete Interventionsmaßnahmen abgeleitet werden können. Im Rahmen der Studie wurden zwölf Grundschulkinder im Alter von acht bis zehn Jahren qualitativ anhand der Photovoice-Methode zu ihrem Schulweg befragt. Basierend auf dem sozial-ökologischen Modell wurden individuelle, soziale und physische Einflussfaktoren aus den Daten extrahiert. Insbesondere die elterliche Erlaubnis, eine mangelnde fahrrad- und fußgängerfreundliche Infrastruktur und rücksichtslose motorisierte Verkehrsteilnehmer*innen hindern Kinder an einem aktiven und eigenständigen Zurücklegen des Schulwegs. Anhand der Studie wurden vielfältige Faktoren auf unterschiedlichen sozial-ökologischen Ebenen identifiziert, welche in Interventionsmaßnahmen zur Förderung eines aktiven und eigenständigen Schulwegs berücksichtigt werden sollten. Zudem sollten Verbesserungsvorschläge der Grundschüler*innen zur Ermöglichung eines aktiven und eigenständigen Schulwegs in der Stadtplanung und -entwicklung kritisch reflektiert und berücksichtigt werden, um kindgerechte Umwelten zu schaffen.
... In the 21st century, faster modes of transport are no longer considered as the best modes of transport, since new goals of accessibility, liveability, economic vitality, age-friendliness, sustainability and health are increasingly recognised as being more important (Tranter & Tolley, 2020). Getting more people walking and cycling, rather than use private forms of transport, is essential to create more sustainable, walkable, safe, healthy and livable environments (Koszowski et al., 2019;Hackl et al., 2019). ...
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Active mobility, in the form of walking and cycling, is one of the most affordable and practical ways to promote sustainable modes of transport in urban areas, creating walkable, safe, healthy and livable environments. Given its multiple beneficial effects, the scientific community frequently considers it as a driver of urban regeneration, highlighting its role in the enhancement of accessibility and competitiveness. This study aims to deepen the role of active mobility in the redevelopment of historical districts characterized by economic and social marginality, as well as consider the resulting improvement of connectivity, attractiveness, and quality of life. To this end, we identify and classify strategies and best practices of active mobility provided by recent papers and international reports. In addition, we propose the application to a significant case study, Pizzofalcone, in the City of Naples. The area, characterized by high historical, architectural, landscape and cultural value, is not integrated with the rest of the historic city center and currently suffers economic and social marginality. The project proposal, which suggests the redevelopment of the area by redesigning pedestrian and cyclist paths, could be an interesting and economical solution to make Pizzofalcone a fundamental hub for the city and a crossing point for a multitude of people.
... Sustaining and attaining significantly higher rates in cycling and walking as modes of transportation (also known as active mobility), and nudging people to walk and cycle more, represent one of the most powerful and significant instruments to achieve social goals and sustainability [4]. Regrettably, infrastructures and incentives for promoting modes of transportation such as walking and cycling are significantly underfunded as compared to car-centric transportation planning and design [5]. ...
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Mobility plays a fundamental role in modern cities. How citizens experience the city, access its core services, and participate in city life, strongly depends on its mobility organization and efficiency. The challenges that municipalities face are very ambitious: on the one hand, administrators must guarantee their citizens the right to mobility and to easily access local services; on the other hand, they need to minimize the economic, social, and environmental costs of the mobility system. Municipalities are increasingly facing problems of traffic congestion, road safety, energy dependency and air pollution, and therefore encouraging a shift towards sustainable mobility habits based on active mobility is of central importance. Active modes, such as cycling, should be particularly encouraged, especially for local recurrent journeys (i.e., home-to-school, home-to-work). In this context, addressing and mitigating commuter-generated traffic requires engaging public and private stakeholders through innovative and collaborative approaches that focus not only on supply (e.g., roads and vehicles) but also on transportation demand management. In this paper, we propose an end-to-end solution for enabling urban cyclability. It supports the companies' Mobility Managers (MMs) acting on the promotion of active mobility for home-to-work commuting, helps the city administrators to understand the needed urban planning interventions, and motivates the citizens to sustainable mobility. To evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed solution we developed two analyses: the first to accurately analyze the user experience and any behaviour change related to the BIKE2WORK initiative, and the second to demonstrate how exploiting the collected data we can inform and possible guide the involved municipality (i.e., Ferrara, a city in Northern Italy) in improving the urban cyclability.
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As thresholds to cities, public spaces adjacent to schools play an important role in children’s everyday mobilities, potentially shaping their future mobility habits and affective experiences. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the urban design conditions of such spaces, defined as “school squares”, and, with the aid of affordance theory, to analyze spatial features and characteristics that might encourage or hinder active and sustainable mobility practices. In the first part of the paper, we define sustainable mobility, conduct a literature review on affective responses to the urban environment, and discuss active school travel (AST) in relation to the design of school squares. By focusing on 416 primary and lower secondary schools in the metropolitan area of Milan, we present an assessment method that is composed of on-desk and on-site surveys. In particular, Phase 1 defines the type of school squares, Phase 2 investigates physical affordances (spatial features and characteristics that directly influence active mobility practices, such as bicycle racks, protective barriers, benches, and parked cars), and Phase 3 discusses symbolic affordances (elements and characteristics that might induce different affective responses to a school square with regard to active mobility, such as bicycle racks, parked cars, greenery, and dustbins). The results indicate that in most cases school squares are characterized by typological confusion that has nothing to do with the school environment: narrow sidewalks, disorder, and low levels of safety. In order to promote active and sustainable mobility choices and enhance children’s mobile experiences, it is necessary to address the aforementioned features. The ultimate goal of this paper is to provide insights for developing an urban regeneration framework that considers school squares a safe context and a starting point from which to perform sustainable mobility practices.
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Planning for active mobility satisfies many fundamental tenets of good urban design and planning. However, planning for active mobility is a complex endeavour due to numerous local, place-based factors that influence active mobility decisions. Recent advancements in urban data research have demonstrated the effectiveness of deep learning methods in evaluating active mobility potential for urban environments. At present, the incorporation of semantic information from deep learning models and street view imagery into spatio-temporal contexts remains a challenge. In particular, knowledge extraction from deep learning models remains an open question for urban planning and decision-making. Towards this issue, we propose a functional deep learning and network science workflow that employs open data from OpenStreetMap and Mapillary to assess factors affecting active mobility decisions and route planning. We demonstrate the generalisability of our analytical workflow through two case studies focusing on urban greenery in Nerima city (Japan) and urban visual complexity in Pasir Ris town (Singapore). Our results reveal clear patterns of heterogeneity in urban streetscapes and identify unevenness in street infrastructure provision based on destination types. Using this information, we propose specific areas for design intervention to improve active mobility planning. Our workflow is applicable for a diverse range of use cases making it relevant to a wide range of stakeholders, not limited to, urban researchers, policy makers and urban planners.
Introduction Active modes of transport can be defined as means of travel and transport at reduced speed, which take up little space on public roads and do not emit air pollutants or noise, being seen as an economic, social, and environmental asset, and a real alternative to motorized vehicles. Given its characteristics, the environmental benefits retrieved from active modes of transport should not serve only as a justification for its promotion but as a decisive and active factor in the scope of its actual use, which translates into the provision of pleasant and less polluted routes. Thus, the main objective of this paper is the development of a model for planning and generating urban routes for active modes that have a less negative influence on active users (pedestrians and cyclists) regarding their exposure to air and noise pollution. Methods Conventional route planners are mostly designed to find the shortest, fastest, or less expensive route. In this research, the model to assign the best route will be presented for pedestrians and cyclists from an environmental point of view, by defining the least polluted, less noisy, and most health-friendly path. Based on the production of noise and air pollution maps, the model proposes the contamination of the network routes, which are used to determine health-oriented routes. The model is carried out through the calculation of the noise and pollution exposure for the routes found, compared to the shortest route. Conclusion It was possible to conclude that less polluted routes may imply a small increase in the length of routes, but a significant gain in terms of reduction in exposure to PM10 and noise for active modes. Thus, the use of health-friendly routes can be seen as a matter of public health and a way for promoting more sustainable mobility.
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“The bicycle share has risen to a level of 7%” – This newsletter headline is just one example that highlights the growing interest of current Austrian transport-policy in fostering bicycle traffic. But where is it most expedient to invest into new infrastructure or initiatives? This work seeks to shed light on the question and therefore presents a new supporting methodology for planners and decision-makers that builds upon body-energy consumption and relies on Austrian census commuter data. The main challenges and scientific contributions lie in the proposal of a new raster-based GIS model to calculate the energetic demand between and inside of Austrian municipalities, overcoming limitations of previous approaches. A regression analysis is conducted in order to check for a statistical relationship between cycle-share and body energy expenditure. This further allows the calculation of a potential value for investments as the deviation between the energetically predicted cycle-share and the present cycling level. Topography and routing distance are reported to explain between 53 and 63 percent of intra- and interzonal bicycle shares. It is therefore concluded that body energy consumption has a major impact on cycling. The work ends with the discussion of results and provides a perspective on the usage of this evidence-based methodology in national and international planning and research. Additionally, a discussion of the results in the context of the simultaneously developed British Propensity to Cycle Tool is provided.
Conference Paper
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When investigating national and international transport policies of the last decade, an ever increasing emphasis on promoting non-motorized transport modes such as walking or cycling can be identified, aiming at reaching multiple political targets (eg. reducing pollution, increasing health or lowering land consumption). However, despite substantial financial efforts being put into infrastructural or awareness-raising activities, achieving the desired modal shift towards active mobility remains a challenge. This is frequently due to unclear cause and effect patterns between active mode shares and their determinants, which in turn leads to uncoordinated or highly fragmented initiatives that impede target-oriented planning. An internationally adopted approach to overcome this problem is applying aggregated statistical models that explain modal choice involving multiple regression techniques and hypothetical covariates. Still, general critique against these models points out that important intangible soft factors such as attitudinal characteristics of the local population or mind-sets and political commitment of decision makers are not duly reflected. Also, for Austria there is currently no systematic holistic approach to explain spatial variance in active travel shares on the scale of municipalities. Hence the main objective of our research is to design a comprehensive macroscopic model-based approach for the quantitative explanation of modal split shares in active travel modes in Austria. In our approach we attach great importance to the inclusion of soft factors in order to contribute novel findings on the dynamics behind active travel. The research outcomes will aid decision makers and planners in their question where and more specifically, how to effectively invest into active mobility by revealing key soft factors and intangible determinants of active travel mode shares alongside a broad range of more known, traditional factors. Based on this evidence-based decision support approach it is possible to simulate impacts of actions when aiming at locally promoting active travel modes.
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Although there is not a formally stated, agreed-upon definition of "lifestyle," interest in this concept has been growing in travel behavior research. Some studies analyze what might be called lifestyles, but in fact various objective socioeconomic characteristics are combined and referred to as stage of life or household composition. This paper, therefore, provides a structured overview of the lifestyle concept (definitions, measurement methods) and illustrates the usefulness of three lifestyle approaches: (a) the socioeconomic and demographic lifestyle approach, based on socioeconomics and demographics; (b) the sociographic approach, based on attitudes toward the family work balance and leisure time; and (c) the mechanistic approach, based on holiday and leisure activities. Data from an Internet survey organized in 2007 in Flanders, Belgium, were used in this analysis to indicate how lifestyles were associated with car use and active travel for active leisure activities. Adding lifestyles to the analysis increased the explained variances in modal choices, but other predictors having a driver's license, car ownership, and the built environment were more important. With respect to car use, a mechanistic approach that used behavioral data seemed more appropriate. With respect to active travel, no striking differences were found between the three lifestyle approaches.
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Background: Active transport is a convenient way to incorporate physical activity in adolescents' daily life. The present study aimed to investigate which psychosocial and environmental factors are associated with walking, cycling, public transport (train, tram, bus, metro) and passive transport (car, motorcycle, moped) over short distances (maximum eight kilometres) among older adolescents (17-18 years), to school and to other destinations. Methods: 562 older adolescents completed an online questionnaire assessing socio-demographic variables, psychosocial variables, environmental variables and transport to school/other destinations. Zero-inflated negative binomial regression models were performed. Results: More social modelling and a higher residential density were positively associated with walking to school and walking to other destinations, respectively. Regarding cycling, higher self-efficacy and a higher social norm were positively associated with cycling to school and to other destinations. Regarding public transport, a higher social norm, more social modelling of siblings and/or friends, more social support and a higher land use mix access were positively related to public transport to school and to other destinations, whereas a greater distance to school only related positively to public transport to school. Regarding passive transport, more social support and more perceived benefits were positively associated with passive transport to school and to other destinations. Perceiving less walking and cycling facilities at school was positively related to passive transport to school only, and more social modelling was positively related to passive transport to other destinations. Conclusions: Overall, psychosocial variables seemed to be more important than environmental variables across the four transport modes. Social norm, social modelling and social support were the most consistent psychosocial factors which indicates that it is important to target both older adolescents and their social environment in interventions promoting active transport. Walking or cycling together with siblings or friends has the potential to increase social norm, social modelling and social support towards active transport.
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Encouraging cycling, as part of a wider sustainable mobility strategy, is an increasingly common objective in transport planning institutions worldwide. Emerging evidence shows that providing appropriate high-quality infrastructure can boost local cycling rates. To maximize the benefits and cost-effectiveness of new infrastructure, it is important to build in the right places. Cycle paths, for example, will have the greatest impact if they are constructed along 'desire lines' of greatest latent demand. The Propensity to Cycle Tool (PCT) seeks to inform such decisions by providing an evidence-based support tool that models current and potential future distributions and volumes of cycling across cities and regions. This paper describes this model and its application to case study cities in England. Origin-destination (OD) data, combined with quantitative information at the level of administrative zones, form the basis of the model, which estimates cycling potential as a function of route distance, hilliness and other factors at the OD and area level. Multiple scenarios were generated and interactively displayed. These were: 'Government Target', in which the rate of cycling doubles in England; 'Gender Equality', in which women cycle as much as men; 'Go Dutch', in which English people cycle as much as people in the Netherlands; and 'E-bikes', an exploratory analysis of increasing the distance people are willing to cycle due to new technology. The model is freely available online and can be accessed at []( This paper also explains how the PCT's open source approach allows it to be deployed in new cities and countries. We conclude that the method presented has potential to assist with planning for cycling-dominated cities worldwide, which can in turn assist with the global transition away from fossil fuels.
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Abstrak. Integrasi infrastruktur transportasi dan perkembangan kota harus ditingkatkan kepentingannya. Di banyak kota di belahan bumi bagian selatan, investasi pada Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) memberikan kesempatan untuk peningkatan tersebut. Akan tetapi, sampai saat ini, sistem BRT telah gagal dalam menciptakan pembangunan yang kompak dan multi-guna bukan saja karena kurangnya perencanaan strategis kawasan stasiun tetapi juga dampak dari penempatan jalur-jalur dan stasiun pada wilayah perkotaan yang stagnan dan pada median jalan yang sibuk. Sistem BRT selama ini dipertimbangkan dan dirancang sebagai suatu investasi pergerakan dan bukan pembentuk kota. Disebabkan mayoritas pertumbuhan kota di masa depan di seluruh dunia akan berada pada kota-kota menengah yang cocok untuk investasi BRT, kesempatan untuk membuat sistem BRT sebagai investasi pembentuk kota tidak boleh disia-siakan. Pembangunan yang berorientasi transit adalah salah satu dari sejumlah model yang paling menjanjikan untuk mendorong pola pergerakan dan urbanisasi yang lebih berkelanjutan di kota-kota di belahan bumi selatan.Kata kunci. Transportasi publik, bus rapid transit, tata guna lahan, keberlanjutan, pembangunan berorientasi transitAbstract. The integration of transport infrastructure and urban development must be elevated in importance. In many cities of the Global South, recent Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) investments provide an unprecedented opportunity to do just that. To date, however, BRT systems have failed to leverage compact, mixed-use development due not only to little strategic station-area planning but also factors like siting lines and stations in stagnant urban districts and busy roadway medians. BRT systems are being conceived and designed as mobility investments rather than city-shaping ones. Given that the majority of future urban growth worldwide will be in intermediate-size cities well-suited for BRT investments, the opportunities for making these not only mobility investments but city-shaping investments as well should not be squandered. Transit-oriented development is but one of a number of built forms that hold considerable promise toward placing cities of the Global South on more sustainable mobility and urbanization pathways.Keywords. Public Transport, bus rapid transit, land use, sustainability, transit oriented development
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The aim of the present research was to examine whether an individuaĺs attitude towards cycling influences his perception of barriers (perceived behavioral control) for cycle commuting. Attitudes and perceived behavioral control were measured using psychological constructs, following the Theory of Planned Behavior. Data collection for this research was conducted in a public college in a Brazilian medium-sized city. The results indicate that the respondents have a positive attitude to cycling for four aspects: environmental benefits, health benefits, economy and feeling of independence. For other eight aspects (better observing the landscape, parking, speed, prestige, effort, risk of accidents, risk of being assaulted and exposure to sun and rain) the general attitude is negative. Perceived behavioral control (barriers) was assessed in relation to six possible obstacles to cycling: lack of infrastructure, lack of safety, distance, skill, slopes and climate. The main deterrent against cycling was lack of adequate cycling infrastructure. Lack of safety (which is associated with the absence of infrastructure) and slopes are other strong obstacles for commuting by bicycle in the city. Individuals who have a negative or neutral attitude toward cycle commuting are not very different in their perception of barriers for cycling. The individuals who have a positive attitude perceive weaker barriers (they have stronger behavioral control). In contrast, a very negative attitude is associated with the perception of stronger barriers.
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Nonmotorized transport modes such as bicycling are becoming important components to urban transportation systems in the United States, in particular with the recent emphases on sustainable urban development. Recent bicycle forecasting methods have included urban design elements to help explain bicycle behavior but most measures lack accountability of microscale built form attributes that address bicyclist perception. This study developed a discrete choice model to examine the impact of urban morphological factors on people's utilitarian bicycle mode choice decisions. In the model, traditional factors considered include personal, household, and environmental variables. Urban morphology variables from space syntax were also incorporated in the model to test for the marginal influence of microscale design and space characteristics in the decision to bicycle. Results indicate that microscale built form factors that enhance visibility and contain well connected street networks significantly affected bicycle mode choice decisions at the trip origin. The finding that built form variables by and large influence the probability that someone will commute via bicycle suggests that policies and planning efforts aimed at increasing bicycle mode share should include human-scaled built form metrics that address urban space and cognition.
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This paper aims at explaining the spatial variation of observed bicycle use when commuting at the level of the 589 communes of Belgium. Explanatory variables are those suggested by transport and urban geography theory (socio-economic characteristics, distances, environmental characteristics, city sizes and characteristics, safety …). Regression techniques are used and special attention is put on autocorrelation, endogeneity and multicollinearity. Results show that most of the inter-municipality variation in bicycle use is related to environmental aspects such as relief, traffic volume and bicycling accidents, as well as city size, distance travelled and features of the population (e.g. share of youngsters or percentage of households with young children).
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This paper aims to conceptualize the upsurge of governmental interest in evidence-based policy in Britain by drawing on two models of policy-evidence interface; the instrumental and the enlightenment model. It argues that much of the drive behind the enthusiasm for evidence is rooted in the linear and utilitarian view of research which is broadly based on three interrelated misconceptions about the nature of evidence, the role of experts, and the influence that these can have on policy. By drawing on examples from the UK planning systems, the paper explores the mismatch between the use of evidence in the “ideal” and the “real” worlds of planning and policy process. It is argued that the assumption made under the positivist view of planning in the 1960s and 1970s are similar to those made under the instrumental view of the policy-research interface.