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Mobility and Transport

Overview

The provision of bicycle facilities and equipment at workplaces is key to fostering a cycle-to-work culture. They can address concerns related to the security of bicycle parking and equipment storage, as well as concerns regarding weather conditions on the journey to work.

Considerations for applicability

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Level of cycling

Workplace cycle facilities are applicable to all cities, irrespective of the level of cycling. When combined with information and awareness campaigns that promote cycling as a safe and effective commuter transport mode, workplace facilities can be an effective initial cycle measure for cities with a low level of cycling.

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Urban layout/topography

Workplaces should provide appropriate facilities according to the needs of cycling commuters. Where hilly topography results in a higher use of electric bicycles and pedelecs, charging points could be provided. Where cyclists may commute over longer distances, workplaces should provide showering facilities.

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Population

The provision of facilities at workplaces could also extend to universities and other educational institutions, subsequently improving cycling conditions for students. Where the provision of workplace facilities encourages the uptake of cycling for work trips, individuals may also consider cycling for other trip purposes.

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Finance Resources

Facilities at workplaces require low to medium investment from the company or employer. Costs for parking will depend on the scale and level of quality. Combining facilities installation with the introduction of moderate parking charges can raise sufficient revenue to overcome the initial investment.

Cities can encourage the provision of workplace facilities through low- cost measures, such as information provision, consultation and campaigning. More costly measures, such as direct subsidies for the installation of bicycle parking facilities, are also effective.

High-quality bicycle parking facilities, installed by the TU Graz, cost around €750 per space. However, price levels for simple solutions start at around €100 per space.

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Time & Human Resources

The time and human resources required, from planning through to installation, depends on the characteristics of the companies and the facilities chosen for implementation. For example, the construction of an underground cycling garage requires much more time than the installation of a simple cycling rack shelters. Although planning and installing may require significant time and human resources, maintaining the facilities requires little effort.

Measure impact highlight

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Modal share

The provision of cycle facilities at workplaces can directly lead to an increase in cycling modal share, by encouraging more employees to commute to work by bike.

Note: An overview of the direct and indirect impacts resulting from correctly implemented cycling measures is available in Challenges that cities face and how cycling can address them

In-depth measure analysis, case studies and further guidance

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Key features

Cycling facilities at workplaces are focussed on improving the experience for employees when arriving at the workplace by bike. The provision or improvement of cycle parking facilities is essential, which should include a consideration of the appropriate number of spaces; weather protection; the option to lock bike frames to racks; proximity of parking to entrances and access to the company site and parking facility. Other facilities that could be considered at workplaces include equipment dedicated to bicycle repairs, provision of storage lockers, showers, facilities to dry wet clothes and charging points for e-bikes.

There is a range of supporting services that companies can offer to enhance the ease of cycling to work. For example, employers can provide company bicycles and the option to borrow equipment such as raincoats or helmets. Bicycle checks by professional bicycle mechanics could also be offered or subsidised by the employer.

Bicycles in racks

The design of http://ec.europa.eu/transport/node/6219{2.1 Cycle parking as Link} can take various forms: fixed box solutions, bike rack shelters, indoor parking rooms and bicycle parking garages. There are also different options relating to bicycle repair facilites, providing company bicycles, charging points, changing rooms and related equipment - in terms of scale, cost for employee, and quality.

The two main actors involved in the provision of facilities at the workplace are businesses and public administration. Businesses are the main actors responsible for managing installations at their own sites, while public administrations have the capacity to promote cycling to work and support investments in cycle facilities at workplaces. Public administrations may also offer cycling facilities for their own employees.

Function and objectives

The main function of cycle facilities at the workplace is to encourage cycling to work by increasing convenience. This largely relates to providing bicycle parking and repair facilities, enabling employees to store other equipment, and offering access to showers and lockers.

The facilities may be used by people who cycle directly to the workplace or who use cycling in combination with other modes of transport. In this case, facilities at the workplace can be a way to encourage multimodal travel.

Complementary measures

The provision of cycle facilities at workplaces and development of infrastructure for moving cyclists complement each other and can result in larger impacts. There are also synergies between cycle facilities at the workplace and measures that encourage multimodal travel, as shown in the case study of Haberkorn in Vorarlberg, Austria. Push measures such as traffic and parking restrictions (LINK) at or near workplaces can also encourage cycling to work.

Finally, delivering informational and awareness campaigns, offering companies subsidies to improve workplace facilities, and including cycling to work within city-level cycling strategies or SUMPs can all be powerful complementary measures (see http://ec.europa.eu/transport/node/6214{3.1 Cycle information and awareness raising as Link} and http://ec.europa.eu/transport/node/6215{3.2 Cycle events as Link}).

Performance

The provision of facilities usually has a positive impact on the number of cycle trips made to work. Austrian company Haberkorn recorded a 23% modal share of employees using train and bike for their trip to work in Graz (Austria), following the implementation on measures to improve the conditions for cyclists at the workplace. As the number of cyclists increases, they can form a relevant and important community within a company.

Companies may benefit from a higher cycling modal share if they are able to save costs by replacing vehicle parking with cycle parking facilities. Savings can relate to reduced space requirements and lower investments in initial construction. In addition, the provision of cycling facilities and encouraging cycling to work increases the accessibility of workplaces by bicycle, potentially reducing travel times and travel costs for employees.

Parameters of success or failure

The provision of convenient cycle parking facilities is the key element necessary for the success of this measure. Where possible, http://ec.europa.eu/transport/node/6219{2.1 Cycle parking as Link} facilities should be easy to access, located close to the entrance of buildings, have sufficient capacity and be protected from the weather.

As highlighted in the ‘complementary measures’ section above, combining workplace facilities with push measures can increase the attraction for employees to cycle to work. The approach taken by the Technical University of Graz is an example of how a combination of push and pull measures can be successful.

To effectively manage and promote facilities, clear responsibilities can be assigned, such as electing an employee to become a bicycle ambassador - responsible for monitoring cycle facilities, raising awareness and listening to feedback.

Cities can play a key role in supporting the roll-out and success of workplace cycling facilities by providing advice and support to workplaces on the implementation of facilities and how to promote cycling to employees. Within the Civitas SMILE project, the City of as Malmö aimed campaigns at workplaces to influence attitudinal and behavioural change and raise awareness of new services and infrastructure. Cities can provide motivation through competitions and rewards: the city of Graz carried out two competitions in the area of mobility management for SMEs, which resulted in 28 companies creating and implementing travel plans. Cities can also establish funding schemes to support the development of facilities at workplaces. In Graz, projects aimed at developing bicycle parking facilities could gain funding from all three levels of government: the City of Graz, the Province of Styria and the State of Austria. The Technical University of Graz made use of this funding mechanism in its mobility management programme.

The Cycle-Friendly Employers (CFE) Certification Framework (https://cfe-certification.eu/measures) can provide support for companies across Europe. Certification is designed to aid European companies to improve conditions for employees who cycle to work and to offer participating companies affirmation and reward for their efforts.

Key lessons for transferability

The provision of facilities at workplaces and related initiatives are largely applicable to all cities, although these measures will benefit from the presence of a cycling network or traffic restrictions.

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[collapsed title=Case Studies]

[collapsed title=Mobility management at the Technical University of Graz (Graz, AT)]

  • Location: Central
  • Population: Medium urban area (286,000)
  • Cycling Modal Share: Climber (14.5%)

The Technical University of Graz (TU Graz) engaged in mobility management of its employees' trips to work due to the overuse of first come first served parking spaces and a need to free space for the expansion of the university's buildings.

As a first step, they analysed the distances of their employee’s journeys to work, finding that half were living within walking and cycling distance. TU Graz then developed a combined push and pull approach to promote sustainable transport as a means to address the two above-mentioned problems.

New regulations for parking management (push)

  • All employees living within 1.5 km of their workplace cannot request a parking permit. The distance was later extended to 2.5 km.

  • All employees working less than half-time cannot request a permit.

  • Permit holders need to pay monthly fees between €15 - €40, depending on employment level and the parking space characteristics (e.g. whether it is roofed)

Also note that two of the three locations of TU Graz are within time-restricted and paid parking zones. This is an existing condition.

Cycling promotion services and infrastructure (pull)

  • Construction of more than 300 covered bicycle parking facilities, with frames to lock the bicycle to (costs approximately €225,000)

  • Three bicycle self-service stations, with air pumps and tools for simple service and repair (costs approximately €10,000)

  • Promotion of the Austrian Bike to Work campaign to employees

  • An annual free-of-charge bicycle service week for all employees, carried out by professional bicycle mechanics (costs approximately €5,000 per year)

  • Bulk purchase of TU Graz branded bicycles offered at a reduced price to employees - more than 700

Public transport promotion (pull):

  • Covering over half of the cost of a half or full year public transport ticket in exchange for turning down the right to apply for a parking space

Through the ‘push and pull’ approach to mobility management of work trips, TU Graz was able to reduce the number of car parking spaces from 1,340 to 740, resulting in an annual emissions reduction of 244 tonnes CO2. A total investment of €500,000 was made (of which 30% was covered by a federal programme), with annual revenue of €170,000 from parking space management. The revenue is now allocated towards the maintenance of the parking system, as well as towards additional investments in softer measures, such as promoting sustainable mobility.

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[collapsed title=Competition on Company Mobility Management (Graz, AT)]

  • Location: Central
  • Population: Medium urban area (286,000)
  • Cycling Modal Share: Climber (14.5%)

In 2012 and 2014, the City of Graz launched a competition inviting all small and medium-sized companies, located in Graz, to submit a mobility management plan for their respective company. The best 5 concepts were then rewarded with prizes of between €3,000 - €10,000, under the condition that they carry out their mobility plans. In 2021, 12 companies participated, growing to 16 companies in 2014.

To motivate small and medium-sized companies, the competition was open only to them, but prior to the competition release Graz published some best practice examples from large companies in the city. The competition provided a guideline document that detailed several possible measures in the areas of public transport, cycling, parking space management and information provision/motivation. The measures were allocated a score depending on the costs and time required to bring the measure into fruition. Based on these guidelines, companies could develop their mobility management plans, either by selecting measures from all five areas or by picking one from the public transport, bicycle or parking themes and complementing them with measures from the areas of information and motivation. Companies used an excel spreadsheet to track measure selection, which would then calculate the total score of the proposed plan and determine whether the required minimum score had been met and how the proposed plan ranked with others.

The five best plans were evaluated by a jury of members from the traffic planning department of Graz, the regional chamber of commerce, a private mobility consultant and a company with good mobility management. The winners had five months to implement their plans, concluding with an awards ceremony at the end of the competition timeline.

In more detail, the competition process included the following steps:

  1. Announcement of the competition at the end of January through a press conference and media articles to promote the competition, highlight the conditions necessary to compete and display the prizes on offer. These were €10,000 for the winner, €7,000 for the second-ranked, €5,000 for the third-ranked and €3,000 for the companies in fourth and fifth place.

  2. Further promotion, including support talks on company premises for interested companies. Information was delivered on measures, how to fill in the excel scoreboard and how to set up the site-based mobility management plan. This phase lasted for 2 and a half months.

  3. Evaluating the plans received and announcing the winners at the end of April / beginning of May.

  4. Mobility plan implementation phase lasted about 5 months, until the end of October. This included an assessment of the conditions at the start and end of the phase, visits to the company premises for supportive talks at the start and in the middle of implementation, as well as an exchange workshop amongst the 5 awarded companies one month after the start of implementation.

  5. Award ceremony for presenting the results and handing over the prizes to the company at the end of the year.

In 2014, the competition costs included approximately €15,000 to hire an external consultant to manage the competition, and the cost of the prizes, which totalled €28,000.

The guideline for the competition is accessible here.

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[collapsed title=Managing the mobility needs of individuals and the business sector (Malmö, SE)]

  • Location: North
  • Population: Medium urban area (333,633)
  • Cycling Modal Share: Champion (22%)

Within the Civitas SMILE project, the City of Malmö delivered several measures to promote sustainable transport use at the workplace.

The actions were carried out by the Department of Streets and Parks, and included:

  • Arranging seminars for local companies

  • Encouraging cycling at companies

  • Individual meetings and guidance to companies

  • Breakfast meetings in the Western Harbour

  • Travel surveys at large companies

These actions followed a step-by-step approach:

  1. Starting with a limited geographical scope: breakfast meetings and company visits, as well as Company and Bike activities in the Western Harbour

  2. Widening the activities: seminar and Company and Bike activities for companies in all of Malmö

  3. Getting more specific in terms of company size: visits to companies with more than 50 employees and for some of the visits, carrying out a travel survey too.

  4. Getting more specific in terms of location: offering dialogue and travel and transport surveys, planning breakfast meetings and networking regarding sustainable transport in areas close to Malmö's City Tunnel rail stations.

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[collapsed title=Experiences from the Province of Vorarlberg / Liechtenstein]

  • Location: Central
  • Population: Regional focus: Vorarlberg (388,752) / Liechtenstein (38,111)
  • Cycling Modal Share: Vorarlberg - Climber (15%) / Liechtenstein - 17% walking and cycling

The Province of Vorarlberg is located at the western edge of Austria, neighbouring Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Several offers and networks exist, which promote the use of sustainable mobility for work trips. Examples below are from the Energy Institute Vorarlberg and the network "Wirtschaft mobil" - a network of companies managing company-related mobility aspects.

Bicycle parking facilities and equipment at OMICRON

OMICRON provides parking facilities to its employees, including cycling garages accessible to cyclists, outdoor cycle parking facilities, and charging points for e-bikes. It provides employees who cycle to work with showers, lockers and facilities for repairs and checks. This offer is complemented by services to lease raincoats, cycling helmets and company bicycles. Extra services even offer mountain bike tandem rental and the use of bicycles during leisure time.

Last mile of work trip - from train station to the company bike at HEBERKORN

In 2010, Haberkorn invested in a service enabling employees to travel from the train station to the workplace by bike. A roofed and lockable bicycle parking facility was installed at the train station and stocked with company bicycles for employees. The concept was taken up by other companies, resulting in approximately 40 company bicycles in service, as well as private bicycles belonging to employees. At Haberkorn, 70 of 350 people are now using the combination of trains and bicycles to get to the office. The bicycles are made available to use for other trips during the day.

Bike check Vorarlberg

A social initiative called INTEGRA trains unemployed people engaged in vocational training to offer service checks for bicycles at company locations. Their mechanics provide checks of brakes, tyres and gears, as well as giving a report to the bicycle owner, including suggestions for repairs. Small repairs can be completed during the check. Costs are absorbed by the companies, offering the service to employees free of charge. A similar initiative exists in Graz, called BICYCLE, which performs the checks for TU Graz.

Parking space management and mobility club at INFICON

During construction of new business areas, a decision was made to reduce the number of car parking spaces, aiming to discourage car use. A parking space management approach divided employees into (a) those with an available alternative to car use and (b) those without. Both groups need to pay for parking at INFICON, but the group with an alternative must pay double the price.

Additionally, employees can join the company's "mobility club". It has 3 membership categories, which defines the maximum number of days a person takes the car to work. The categories are:

  • Basic: maximum of 96 days a year by car

  • Plus: maximum of 52 days a year by car

  • Top: maximum of 12 days a year by car

Inside these limits, members can park their car for free in a dedicated area. Employees joining the club choose the category themselves, based on their self-assessment. INFICON offers services and facilities for cyclists, such as weather-protected and lockable bicycle parking close to the building entrance, changing rooms with showers and lockers, repair stations and bike checks.

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[collapsed title=Key guidance, further reading and references]

City of Graz (2014) “Betriebliches Mobilitätsmanagement – Ein Leitfaden zur Unterstützung umweltfrendlicher Wege zur Arbeit“ (A guidance for companies to environmentally friendly trips to work)

betriebliches_mobilitatsmanagement
English
(4.7 MB - PDF)
Download

Cycle-friendly employers certification: https://cfe-certification.eu/

CIVITAS Initiative – Mobility management for companies: http://www.civitas.eu/measure/mobility-management-companies

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