Ride-Hailing Services Add Traffic to Denver Roads

This study looked at ride-hailing services like Lyft in Denver and Boulder. Photo courtesy of Lyft.
This study looked at ride-hailing services like Lyft in Denver and Boulder. Photo courtesy of Lyft.

About 34% of people would have taken transit, biked, or walked if they hadn’t used ride-hailing services like Uber or Lyft, according to a University of Colorado study by Alejandro Henao.

Henao worked as a driver for Uber and Lyft and surveyed 311 passengers over four months in Denver, Boulder, and various nearby suburbs.

In the study, Henao looked at vehicle miles traveled impacts, parking impacts, and travel behavior. He identified himself as a grad student doing research on transportation and asked riders to take a short survey about the ride.

When asked, “How would you have traveled if Lyft/Uber wasn’t an option?” 22.2% answered public transportation, 19% said drive alone, 12.2% said wouldn’t have traveled and 11.9% said bike or walk. Other answers included taxi, carpool as a rider, other ride hailing, get a ride, car rental, and carpool as a driver.

According to the study, 63.9% drive about the same because of ride hailing while 19.7% drive a bit less and 14% drive a lot less.

When asked what they usually use ride hailing for, going out/social topped the list, followed by work, when out of town, shopping and errands, airport, and school.

According to the study, the main reason that the respondents take Lyft/Uber is for going out/drinking, followed by parking is difficult/expensive, don’t have a car available, cost, able to do something while riding, time, and weather.

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