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The Journal of Transport and Land Use

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Urban transportation -- Oregon -- Portland -- Planning, Bicycle commuting -- Oregon -- Portland Metropolitan Area, Cycling -- Route choice


Do people perceive the built environment the same as we objectively measure it? If not, what are the relative roles of the objective versus the perceived environment on bicycling behavior? This study, based on data from Portland, Oregon, explored the match or mismatch between the objective and perceived bicycling environment and how it affects people’s bicycling behavior. The descriptive analysis indicated a fair agreement between perceived and objective measures. Older adults, women having children, less-educated and lower-income persons, and those who bicycle less tended to perceive their high-bikeable environment (measured objectively) as being a low-bikeable environment. In addition to the socio-demographics, this study also found that the social environment can play a role in the relationship between the objective and perceived environment. Finally, results of this study indicated that both the actual and perceived built environment are associated with bicycling behavior, particularly for utilitarian bicycling. For recreational bicycling, the objective environment attributes measured in this study are not significant factors, while perceptions do matter


This is an open access article licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution – Noncommercial License 3.0

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