Toronto Metropolitan University
MEKONNEN, Gelila.pdf (6.42 MB)

Urban cycling equity : an analysis of equity based approaches in public bike sharing program development in Toronto

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posted on 2022-05-24, 14:02 authored by Gelila Mekonnen
The prominence of bike sharing programs as an alternative mode of green transportation has captured the attention and stimulated renewed enthusiasm among urban cyclists, municipalities, and urban planners alike. However, researchers and critics question the distributive effects of these services on marginalized communities. When examined closer, studies demonstrate that bike share users have on average, a high education status, work full time, and have high incomes. Moreover, older adults, women, and low-income communities remain marginally represented in bike share user demographics throughout major North American cities. In recognition of these observations, this Major Research Paper (MRP) explores how these equity considerations are relevant to Bike Share Toronto (BST), the City of Toronto’s publicly-owned bike share program. This analysis uses mixed method research including spatial analysis of the existing BST service area, an analysis of BST Equity Survey results, and expert interviews with representatives with key institutional perspectives on bike share equity. Finally, this research highlights key considerations relevant for the development of a bike share equity intervention by BST.

Key Words: Active transportation, Bike Share Toronto, transportation equity, bike share equity programs





  • Master of Planning


  • Urban Development

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • MRP

Thesis Advisor

Magdalena Ugarte