Impacts of Bike Sharing Program on Subway Ridership in New York City

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - bike, mode - subway/metro, place - north america, place - urban, land use - impacts, ridership - behaviour, planning - integration, infrastructure


Bike sharing, Subway, ridership, first-last mile


Bike sharing programs have become increasingly popular in many cities. These services allow users to rent bikes for utilitarian and recreational trips in the urban area. Bike sharing has been considered a suitable mode to support the first- and last-mile connectivity problems of fixed-route transit services. Bike sharing has also emerged as a convenient mode for short-distance trips that previously would not have been possible without using public transit or personal bikes. This study investigated the impacts of Citi Bike—a bike sharing program—on the subway ridership in New York City (NYC), using Poisson-Gamma models. Bike sharing trips with destinations within a quarter-mile radius of a subway station were associated with subway ridership increase. A 10% increase in the number of bike trips increased the average daily subway ridership by 2.3%. However, a higher number of bike stations around a subway station decreased the subway ridership in instances where more bike trips originated (as opposed to ended) in the subway station’s service area. The presence of dedicated bike lanes and bike racks attracted more bike users and increased subway ridership. Findings from this study indicate that the development of bike-friendly infrastructure such as activities outlined in the recent NYC Department of Transport (DOT) “Green Wave” program can increase both bike sharing and subway ridership. In addition, policies and initiatives by transportation agencies to better integrate bike sharing programs with the transit system have the potential to increase the attractiveness of bike sharing programs and maximize the subway ridership.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by SAGE, copyright remains with them.