ITE Journal - May 2020 - 17

shutterstock/Marcel Conrad

The full report
and more
information
about Portland State
University's bike share
research is available
at https://trec.
pdx.edu/research/
bikeshare.

A recent survey by Portland State University found that larger cities' bike share equity programs mostly focused on
addressing cost and payment barriers, followed by education or facilitated enrollment.

The 103 reported programs were most often targeted
toward: low-income individuals (56 percent), specific
neighborhoods or geographic areas (34 percent), specific racial or ethnic groups (22 percent), people of all
abilities (15 percent), and other populations, including
unbanked residents, people without smartphones or
credit cards, and veterans or students (16 percent).
Programs focused on addressing cost and payment
barriers were most common (84 percent of systems with
specific equity programs, and 62 percent of all systems, had such a focus), followed by programs focused
on education or facilitated enrollment (53 percent of
systems with equity programs and 39 percent of all systems); service areas and station siting (51 percent and
38 percent); and marketing, information, and materials
(49 percent and 36 percent).
You can't evaluate what you don't measure.
Common sources of data for many systems-periodic member surveys and usage data-may not be
enough to measure progress toward equity goals.
Challenges include limited funding to plan and
execute data collection efforts, and finding staff or
partners with the skills to collect and analyze data.
Further, the brief life cycle of most equity programming (programs often last just one season or year)
makes it hard to gather consistent data over time.
About 61 percent of the equity efforts described
by responding cities and systems included some data
collection component. For certain popular program

types, though, data collection was absent or too limited
to provide much guidance-only 34 percent of marketing campaigns and 39 percent of ambassador programs
included any data gathering effort. Many programs
reported collecting only simple frequency data, such
as number of events, stations, sign-ups, or trips, which
may not be robust enough to translate into adequate
program effectiveness measures. While a number of
systems indicated using qualitative feedback (stories,
examples, etc.) to gauge program effectiveness, they
often do not have systems in place to collect that data in
a regular or systematic way.
Because of the issues and barriers of collecting better
data, it is important for operators and cities to work
together to strategically determine what they need to
measure and why. Setting short-term and long-term
goals and outcomes can help provide guidance and
focus to data collection, especially for organizations
with limited funds and resources. By linking data and
evaluation to equity policies, organizations can then
manage their resources appropriately and collect the
data needed to evaluate programs and to tell stories
about their efforts. Figure 1 shows how linking outreach
activities to memberships and ridership can eventually
link to program outcomes that are meaningful to the
community, funders and decision makers. Often you
will need to collect additional information and data,
such as community-based intercept surveys, to give a
more holistic picture of use and impact.

The report
covers: how bike
share systems define
and articulate equity;
detailed discussions
of approaches to
equity programming,
including example
programs, self-rated
effectiveness, and
example metrics;
reflections on
equity successes,
challenges, and
improvements; and,
detailed case studies
of equity program
efforts in five U.S.
cities (Portland,
OR; Milwaukee,
WI; Pittsburgh, PA;
Ithaca, NY; and
Los Angeles, CA).
What's Next? We
are developing a set
of two-page briefs
on select topics from
the report, which will
be released in the
coming months.

w w w .i t e.or g

May 2020

17


https://trec.pdx.edu/research/bikeshare https://trec.pdx.edu/research/bikeshare https://trec.pdx.edu/research/bikeshare http://www.ite.org

ITE Journal - May 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ITE Journal - May 2020

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