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Females on Wheels

As an exploration of urban informatics, the Females on Wheels project examined female Citi Bike ridership in New York City Summer 2020. The intersection of many sociocultural pressures, occupational norms, and the simultaneous occurrence of events such as the COVID-19 pandemic, major economic shifts and Black Lives Matter movement all can affect female ridership. Research has found that motor vehicles are more likely to encroach on female cyclist’s space compared to men, making safety an especially pressing issue for women. Further, perceived safety serves as the main determinant for potential cyclists in which there is a direct relationship between the quality and presence of bike infrastructure, and perceived safety. Elucidation of female bike ridership could provide insight into where more high quality bike infrastructure is needed. This project utilized Citi Bike origin-destination data and network science methodologies to assess directed spatial patterns, node centrality, incoming/outgoing degree, and route analysis. Spatial contextualization of the routes highlighted interesting relationships with healthcare locations, bike infrastructure, and female ridership. The route analysis conducted based on the results from the network outputs showed potential spaces for bike infrastructure improvement. Future urban planning should incorporate more network science and informatics to understand and advocate for greater female bike ridership.