Incentives to Winter Cycling
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Dalhousie University’s recent Greening the Campus Movement has included many steps to reduce carbon emissions and promote sustainability. One way to continue this process is to encourage active (non-fossil fuel sourced) transportation such as walking or cycling. The university’s current cycling population of 5% drops further in the winter months due to perceived and real barriers such as snow and bike maintenance (Unicycle, 2001). This study investigated what possible incentives would make cyclists and non cyclist students more likely to commute to campus in the winter via bicycle. Focus groups were held on Studley Campus, while open-question poster boards were placed on all three campuses. The focus groups as well as poster boards revealed that many students perceive cycling in the winter as more dangerous, yet improved bike lane infrastructure and end-of-use facilities such as indoor/sheltered bike racks would make them more likely to cycle in winter months. These findings indicated a strong need for the University to work closely with city planners to build better bike lane infrastructure.