PSU study finds bike lanes have potential to improve business

Education

Food service business saw the most benefit

A bikeway marking in Portland. (KOIN)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — After studying various corridors in multiple cities around the country, Portland State University found that bike lanes can actually boost business.

The PSU report is part of a larger study, called the National Street Improvements Study. Taking information found in 14 corridors across six cities, including Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, Memphis, Minneapolis and Indianapolis, bike lanes had “either positive or non-significant impacts on sales and employment.” The study states at worst, any negative impact is minimal.

“I think that it is very significant that we found that positive business outcomes to the food service and retail industries on these corridors are persistent, even when we looked at different data metrics on employment or sales or when different analytical methods are utilized,” said Jenny Liu, associate professor in the Toulan School of Urban Studies & Planning.

PSU said this study is one of the first to “apply consistent and robust analytical approaches across multiple corridors and multiple cities.”

The study found that food service businesses benefitted the most from improved corridors and bike lanes — even if that meant removing a street lane for cars.

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