Regional bicycle network evaluation and strategic planning: A quantitative methodological approach despite limited data sources for cycling

Alex van Dulmen*, Martin Fellendorf

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


In cases where budgets and space are limited, the realization of new bicycle infrastructure is often hard, as an evaluation of the existing network or the benefits of new investments is rarely possible. Travel demand models can offer a tool to support decision makers, but because of limited data availability for cycling, the validity of the demand estimation and trip assignment are often questionable. This paper presents a quantitative method to evaluate a bicycle network and plan strategic improvements, despite limited data sources for cycling. The proposed method is based on a multimodal aggregate travel demand model. Instead of evaluating the effects of network improvements on the modal split as well as link and flow volumes, this method works the other way around. A desired modal share for cycling is set, and the resulting link and flow volumes are the basis for a hypothetical bicycle network that is able to satisfy this demand. The current bicycle network is compared with the hypothetical network, resulting in preferable actions and a ranking based on the importance and potentials to improve the modal share for cycling. Necessary accompanying measures for other transport modes can also be derived using this method. For example, our test case, a city in Austria with 300,000 inhabitants, showed that a shift of short trips in the inner city toward cycling would, without countermeasures, provide capacity for new longer car trips. The proposed method can be applied to existing travel models that already contain a mode choice model.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransportation Research Record
PublisherSAGE Publications Ltd
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Publication series

NameTransportation Research Record
ISSN (Print)0361-1981
ISSN (Electronic)2169-4052


  • Bicycle demand model
  • Bicycle network planning
  • Microzone demand model
  • Multimodal demand model
  • Operations
  • Travel demand 18 model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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