Program Coverage Area
For cycle share systems to offer a meaningful transportation option, they should cover large, contiguous areas that include a variety of neighborhoods, employment centers, cultural or recreational destinations, and high-density areas. Initial coverage areas should be carefully selected and strategically expanded in phases while maintaining critical station density and spacing across the entire system.
Program Density and Station Spacing
Cycle share usage is largely driven by convenience. So, having many options will increase overall ridership. While many people will comfortably walk 400 m to reach a mass transit stop, it appears that the distance someone is willing to walk in order to use a bicycle is smaller, about 300 m, or a 5-minute walk.
Since this distance remains the same regardless of neighborhood type, the size of the stations should be adjusted, not the spacing. When a station is full or empty, a user should be able to easily go to the nearest station to drop off or pick up a bicycle. Cities should ensure that stations are spaced no more than 300 m apart across the entire program area. This translates to an overall density of 11 stations per square kilometer.
Station distance is fundamental to the success of a cycle share system. Stations should be located no more than 300 m apart.