Study: Bike Lanes Don’t Hurt Business

In some cases, may help

Adam Roy

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Far from driving off customers, bike lanes could boost businesses’ sales, according to a study by a student at the University of Washington.

Kyle Rowe, a student in the Community, Environment, and Planning program, studied retail outlets’ sales before and after the construction of two new bike lanes in business districts in Seattle. His findings? Businesses earned more, in some cases increasing sales up to 400 percent, according to Treehugger.

While it seems likely that cyclists were responsible for the shift, at least in part, Rowe cautions that there’s no way to determine that for sure, though he says it’s clear that the new lanes didn’t hurt business. “The only conclusion that can be drawn from the data is that the changes to the right-of-way at the [business districts] did not have a negative economic impact on the businesses.”

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