Characterization of Bicycle Rider Behavior Among Various Street Environments

Since the establishment of the Bicycle Master Plan in 2009, the City of Austin has greatly expanded its bicycle network to fulfill the population’s growing interest in cycling. The City of Austin has continuously advanced towards a more bicycle-friendly environment with the growth in the installation of protected bicycle lanes. However, issues with non-compliance have been recognized as improvements in bicycle facilities have been made. It is hypothesized that non-compliant behavior arises when cyclists are unclear of their role in the traffic system, and can be reduced by providing a built environment with clearer instructions. This study was conducted to address factors that impact cyclist non-compliant behavior. This report reviews an observational study before the installation of bicycle signals to evaluate cyclist behavior in the existing local context. Observations were made throughout a 24-hour period at 11 intersections and non-compliant cyclist behavior was characterized as well as motorist-cyclist interactions. The non-compliance rate was computed as the total number of non-compliant cyclists observed at an intersection divided by the total number of cyclists observed at the intersection. Both time of day and level of traffic stress (LTS) were considered factors relevant to the studied behaviors. LTS was assigned to each intersection based on a set of criteria. The objectives of this study are to: (1) identify whether cyclist behave differently across built environments; (2) find the factors that impose differences in cyclist behavior; and (3) identify the correlation between the LTS and cyclist behavior. Though many have studied cyclist behavior and factors influencing cyclist behavior, most of these studies have focused on intrinsic factors rather than the effect of the local environment. The study found that non-compliance rate of cyclists was inversely correlated with LTS, with higher non-compliance rate at lower LTS, and intersections with LTS 1 showed significantly higher non-compliance rate (25.33%) than other LTS groups (9.96%, 8.50%, and 3.09% corresponding to LTS 2, 3, and 4 respectively). The study also pointed out that the non-compliance rate was correlated with time. During morning off-peak (0:00 to 7:00), cyclist showed significantly higher non-compliance rate (27.74%) comparing to other time periods (12.91%, 14.93%, 10.14%, and 10.87%, corresponding to morning peak, mid-day off-peak, mid-day peak, and night off-peak respectively). Lastly, it was found that cyclists do behave differently across the different urban environments.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Edition: Final Report
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 71p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01687881
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Project ID: 2018 Project 06
  • Contract Numbers: 69A3551747133
  • Created Date: Dec 3 2018 5:15PM