The Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia works to promote bicycling as a healthy form of alternative transportation as well as a recreational activity in the greater Philadelphia area. To that end, they advocate for increased bicycle infrastructure, resources, and awareness within the city.
The Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia was interested in analyzing and visualizing bicycle activities in Philadelphia based on bicycle facilities (lanes, racks), bike crashes, bike related fatalities, and bike thefts. They were also interested in learning more about the locational influence of fatal bike crashes, and finally wanted to determine if there is a correlation between bike theft and availability of bike parking.
In order to create a map representing bicycle activity in Philadelphia, Tyler used an index of available variables, such as bicycle infrastructure, ride counts, theft data, bicycle parking, American Community Survey transportation data, and crash locations, among others. He created a bicycle theft map from theft location data where theft locations and counts were analyzed to explore spatial relationships. He also generated an interactive bicycle crash map as both a static map and embeddable code that can be inserted onto the Bicycle Coalition’s web site.
Through his analysis, Tyler found that about 11,000 bikes worth $3.9 million were stolen in Philadelphia between 2007 and 2013, and that bike theft was on the rise (at the time of his analysis), jumping 15.5% from about 137 bikes stolen a month in 2007 to 162 a month in 2012. Areas more prone to see bike thefts were identified: neighborhoods around universities, Washington Square West and City Hall.