Intermodality: success by integrating public transport modes and cycling

Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - bike


To reduce the increase of car use several policy instruments are planned by the Dutch Government. Increasing the costs of car use is the most effective instrument. Another policy instrument in the transport policy plans of the Dutch government is the reduction of car use by improving alternative modes of transport such as public transport and the use of bicycles. A major obstacle in this policy is the quality of these alternatives in comparison with the use of a private car. For short distances the bicycle in many cases can serve as a good substitute for the car. For larger distances public transport is the only alternative for the use of a car. But public transport is evaluated as far more time- consuming and more expensive than the use of the car (by users of car as well as public transport). Besides, travelling with the car is experienced as more comfortable, feeling more independent and having more status. So, the question arises how to improve the quality of travelling with public transport so that it can compete with the car. To do this, the whole transport chain from origin to destination should be considered. The alternatives can better compete if the journey by car is expected to be relative time- consuming or inconvenient, e.g. in urban areas or at longer distances. On the other hand transport chains with public Iransport could be optimised to make competition with the car possible. One way to do this is to make use of a bicycle before and/or after the use of public transport in one trip. Herewith the journey-time from origin to destination can be shorter and more reliable than with local public transport. Also, the "main" part of the trip (train, metro, expressbus, ere) probably can be improved, when the network would have a larger scale (less stops, directer connections, higher speeds, higher frequencies, more reliability). Apart from walking all other modes could profit from this 'high quality' network: local public transport, trein-taxi, shared taxi, transport for elderly and handicapped, the private car, etc. Also the provisions for these modes could be brought to a higher standard. The transport chain integrating public transport and cycling is an example of approaching the whole journey as a transport chain with different modes. Other examples of intermodality in the Netherlands are: interchange stations (socalled transferia to transfer from car to public transport), mulfimodal travel information, trip service providers. In this paper we will first describe the actual and potential role of the bicycle in public transport trips. Next we will summarise the factors influencing the use of bicycle and public transport (both in one trip). Finally, we will give some recommendations for research and policy for the future.


Permission to publish abstract given by AET.