A geospatial approach to studying bicycle equity in Indianapolis, Indiana

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Tepe, Ross
Yoo, Sanglim
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Thesis (M.U.R.P.)
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Bike lanes and bike trails are growing types of transportation infrastructure in Indianapolis, Indiana. In the past decade, 215 miles have been built. While the locations of the current and planned bikeways of Indianapolis are known, there is little research as to who these bikeways serve. As more bikeways are planned, it is important that low-income and historically underserved communities are not forgotten. This research project takes a geospatial approach to understanding which demographic and socioeconomic groups have access to the current and planned bikeways in Indianapolis. Unlike other bike equity studies, this project examined bikeways by type, such as bike lanes, protected bike lanes, and bike trails. By using census block group level data and GIS spatial analysis, this project found that both current and planned bikeway access in Indianapolis is fairly equitable by race and ethnicity for all bikeway types. Furthermore, this project found that current and planned bikeway access slightly favored households in poverty over the average Indianapolis household. Despite drastically improving bikeway access with the planned network, this project found that many areas still lack access, particularly pockets on the near northeast, east, southeast, and west sides of Indianapolis.