An Inquiry Into the Potential and Sustainability Benefits Derived From the Expansion of Bike Sharing System in Porto, Portugal
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Citationchristensen, cindy. 2019. An Inquiry Into the Potential and Sustainability Benefits Derived From the Expansion of Bike Sharing System in Porto, Portugal. Master's thesis, Harvard Extension School.
AbstractThe primary goal of this research is to model the potential of a bike sharing program (BSP) in Portugal and more specifically within the city of Porto. BSP has been a preferred mode of transportation for many urban cities across the globe due to several key benefits such as that they are environmentally friendly, cost-effective, convenient, safe, and a great way to stay healthy. In recent years, many major cities around the world looking to improve their urban infrastructure not only for their citizens but as well as potential tourists have justified their adoption of various schemes of BSP in order to decrease the percentage of private car usage as well as to promote a more sustainable way of traveling. Due to the increasing amount of tourism in Porto and desire to reduce the effects of climate change, an introduction of a green mode of transportation like BSP- if implemented successfully could solidify Porto as a sustainable tourist destination as well as allow the Municipality of Porto to meet several of its goals of improving accessibility and sustainability in the urban center of the city.
The research questions addressed by this thesis are: Under what conditions could the expansion of BSP in Porto, Portugal become successful? What are some potential business benefits derived from BSP on a particular city through examples of past case studies? What factors such as business strategies and public policies are needed in order to successfully design the expansion of BSP? Hypotheses include: BSP can have positive implications for the city of Porto, driven by a strong commitment to mitigate climate change effects from the Municipality of Porto, an expectation to improve local citizens lives through benefits derived from the implementation of BSP. The implementation of a success BSP will improve the well-being of the citizens of Porto as well as help to mitigate the influx of tourists by providing them with a sustainable transportation option, which in the end will provide sustainable and economic benefits to the city of Porto.
In order to measure the potential of BSP in Porto, case studies from various cities around the world with similar characteristics to Porto were pulled in order to create a large database. In addition, data from other cities in were collected in order to compare and analyze the possible effects and challenges of BSP. From the data and primary sources, a system dynamics model was created in order to predict the feasibility of implementing BSP in Porto. In addition, Spearman Rank’s Order Correlation was used to assess which variables were the most impactful as well as their relationships with each other.
From the data collected in Portugal, there is limited access, public knowledge and academic research relating to BSP. However, with the mild climate, low cost of living and other favorable factors the city of Porto could have the potential to implement a successful BSP if these conditions were met. After moving to Porto from North America, I realized that there is a potential for bike sharing in the city of Porto due to the local interests as well as various other favorable factors.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:42004143
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