Spatial Information for Safer Bicycling

  • Martin LoidlEmail author
Part of the Progress in IS book series (PROIS)


The need for sustainable modes of transport is obvious, especially in urban areas. Because of the large number of trips within cities and distances lesser than 5 km, the bicycle is regarded as optimal mode of transport, both for utilitarian and leisure trips. Nevertheless, safety concerns are among the most relevant factors that hamper an increasing bicycle usage. Geographical Information Systems (GIS) with their ability to model and analyze road infrastructure and users in an explicitly spatial context can significantly contribute to meet these safety concerns. They can be employed in all stages of better understanding bicycle safety as a spatio-temporal phenomenon and provide the basis for informed decisions in the context of planning, information provision and cycling promotion.

After a short introduction about why it is necessary to address safety issues in the promotion of the bicycle as sustainable mode of transport, the benefits of a spatial perspective on the road space and its users are described. The main argument is that road traffic, and with this road safety, are spatial phenomena by their very nature and thus GIS can significantly contribute to various applications that foster safety improvements for bicyclists. In order to demonstrate how spatial information can be incorporated in various contexts, several application examples and case studies, where spatial modelling and analysis are key features, are given. Based on this overview a final section provides a brief outlook of current and future research topics that aim to further make use of spatial information for safer bicycling.


Geographical information systems (GIS) Bicycle safety Spatial analysis 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geoinformatics, Z_GISUniversity of SalzburgSalzburgAustria

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