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Reimagining our cities to be healthier places for everyone: Team INTERACT examines the impact of
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Reimagining our cities to be healthier places for everyone: Team INTERACT examines the impact of an ‘All Ages and Abilities’ Bike Network on health and well-being using a mixed methods approach

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presented by Karen Laberee

Baseline data was collected in 2017 for the first INTERACT study site – Victoria, British Columbia—where we are examining the impact of an All Ages and Abilities (AAA) Bike Network. Over 300 participants, who ride a bicycle at least occasionally, were recruited for the 5-year longitudinal study.

The goal of the interviews was to gather descriptions of individual experiences of urban contexts, in general and with respect to the AAA bike network. Open-ended questions fell under the themes of neighborhood, well-being, social connectivity, facilitators and barriers to bicycling, and the intervention (AAA bike network). We invited participants to talk about their neighborhood, daily routines, social activities, travel modes, cycling behavior, and what they knew and how they felt about the AAA bike network.


Laberee K, Bailey K, Fischer J, Ottoni C, Sims-Gould J, Nelson TA, Kestens Y, Fuller D, Lord S, Shareck M, Winters M. Reimagining our cities to be healthier places for everyone: Team INTERACT examines the impact of an ‘All Ages and Abilities’ Bike Network on health and well-being using a mixed methods approach. Poster Presentation at: Walk, Bike, Places; Sept. 2018; New Orleans, LA.

Published in: Science
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Reimagining our cities to be healthier places for everyone: Team INTERACT examines the impact of an ‘All Ages and Abilities’ Bike Network on health and well-being using a mixed methods approach

  1. 1. Reimagining our cities to be healthier places for everyone: Team INTERACT examines the impact of an All Ages and Abilities Bike Network on health and well-being using a mixed methods approach K. Laberee1,2; K. Bailey1; J. Fischer1; C. Ottoni3 ; J. Sims-Gould3; T. Nelson2,4; Y, Kestens5; D. Fuller6; S. Lord5; M. Shareck7; and M. Winters1. 1 Simon Fraser University, Canada; 2 University of Victoria, Canada; 3 University of British Columbia, Canada; 4 Arizona State University, United States; 5 Université de Montréal, Canada; 6 Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada; 7 University of Toronto, Canada Background The INTerventions, Research, and Action in Cities Team (INTERACT) is a national research collaboration interested in how changes to the built environment impact health and well-being. In the first INTERACT study in Victoria, BC, we are examining the impact of an All Ages and Abilities Bike Network. Over 300 participants, who bike at least occasionally, were recruited for a five-year longitudinal study. In 2017, participants were asked to complete two surveys and collect GPS & accelerometry data. From this cohort, 25 participants were chosen for a semi-structured interview. Objectives The goal of the interviews was to gather descriptions of individual experiences of urban contexts, in general and with respect to the AAA bicycle network. Specifically, we were interested in exploring participants’ view on: • their neighbourhood: how it impacts their social connectivity and well-being; • facilitators and barriers to bicycling; and • the intervention (AAA bike network). Who Did We Talk To? We asked participants: What type of cyclist best describes you? • Strong & Fearless; • Enthused & Confident; • Interested but Concerned; or • No Way; No How. Several were reluctant to call themselves “fearless”, despite being strong cyclists. (No participants identified as “No Way; No How”.) Neighbourhood: Social Connection Are you satisfied with your connection to the local community? “No. But I really enjoy the view that I have from home…and you know how it is when you rent. You get what you get and you don’t get upset. I just wake up every morning and (am) like, oh, my god, look at those mountains or look at the ocean. I can’t complain.” “I think it’d be nice to have more connection…having…seen other friends who’ve moved into communities and they know all their neighbours and all their neighbours’ kids. They spend a lot of time at each other’s houses…it would be nice.” “There was a lot of retired people in the neighbourhood and they really looked after our animals and our kids…it was just a really friendly, loving neighbourhood. And so we stayed, actually, and added on to our house instead of moving. Lately now…because of housing costs we see a lot of turnover. So the neighbourhood community was very strong, but has gone down, I think, because of the turnover.” Neighbourhood: Well-Being A Disconnect? Survey responses to questions on neighbourhood attachment and community belonging were quite positive, while the discussions in interviews revealed that few had strong connections to their local community. Special Places? In the interviews, exploring well-being resonated more when we discussed public places where participants enjoyed spending time, and the feelings those places evoked. The Intervention Pandora Protected Lane The City of Victoria is building a network of bicycle routes consisting of: • physically separated bike lanes; • shared roadways; and • multi-use trails. Phase 1 consists of 5.4 km of downtown streets with All Ages and Abilities cycling routes. In interviews, we asked what participants like and dislike about the AAA bike network. The number of spoke beads represent the number of participants who mentioned this theme. Facilitators to Bicycling The Galloping Goose is a regional trail system and is well used as both a transportation corridor and recreation facility. Many mentioned the Galloping Goose and its role facilitating bicycling in their lives. Of the streets mentioned as barriers to cycling, only Wharf St. will get protected lanes under the AAA bike network plan. The plan does include routes that parallel Cook and Shelbourne Streets. Galloping Goose? Research funded by: “It feels so nice and feels so comfortable…you could feel the quality of the street change. It does feel like more of a social area now.” “I love to ride my bike in the springtime. The cherry blossoms start coming out. There is this amazing scent in the air and they’re all falling down and swirling around my tires.” “Dallas Road is so gorgeous. I don’t consider myself to be a spiritual person, but there’s something that fills my chest with that sense of…I don’t know what it is but I always feel refreshed and rejuvenated when I go down there.” “We like Chinatown because it feels unplanned. There are more things there that you might see that would surprise you, right? Which is why you live in a city…” Barriers to Bicycling

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