, Volume 41, Issue 6, pp 1205–1225 | Cite as

The impact of weather conditions on bikeshare trips in Washington, DC

  • Kyle Gebhart
  • Robert B. NolandEmail author


Bicycle usage can be affected by colder weather, precipitation, and excessive heat. The research presented here analyzes the effect of weather on the use of the Washington, DC, bikeshare system, exploiting a dataset of all trips made on the system. Hourly weather data, including temperature, rainfall, snow, wind, fog, and humidity levels are linked to hourly usage data. Statistical models linking both number of users and duration of use are estimated. Further, we evaluate trips from bikeshare stations within one quarter mile of Metro (subway) stations at times when Metro is operating. This allows us to determine whether Metro serves as a back-up option when weather conditions are unfavorable for bicycling. Results show that cold temperatures, rain, and high humidity levels reduce both the likelihood of using bikeshare and the duration of trips. Trips taken from bikeshare stations proximate to Metro stations are affected more by rain than trips not proximate to Metro stations and less likely when it is dark. This information is useful for understanding bicycling behavior and also for those planning bikeshare systems in other cities.


Bicycle sharing Weather Transit Multivariate analysis 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.New York City Department of TransportationNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center, Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public PolicyRutgers UniversityNew BrunswickUSA

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