- Bird on Thursday released data from a public opinion survey, conducted by Global Strategy Group, which found eight in 10 Americans believe vehicle traffic and pollution are "serious problems" in cities.
- The national survey, which polled 1,024 registered voters from Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and DC, found 84% of respondents think cities should provide more environmentally friendly alternatives to driving, and 73% acknowledge their personal car usage is contributing to climate change. The survey also found more than half of respondents would "make interesting sacrifices" to reduce time spent in traffic — 26% would give up social media for a year, while 14% would shave their head.
- "Consumers want choice with everything they do and experience, including transportation," Bird CEO Travis VanderZanden said in a statement. "These surveys make clear that voters want their leaders to reduce traffic and give them a convenient, affordable, and environmentally friendly option for short trips so they don’t have to rely on cars."
The findings of this national survey fall in line with transportation trends being set by mobility providers and city leaders — most notably that cities must reduce personal car dependency. While 73% of voters acknowledged their car usage is not environmentally friendly, that same percentage said they use their cars for trips less than two miles, leaving companies such as Bird to develop solutions that will get more riders onto shared scooters and bikes.
Luckily, according to this survey, there is a steady demand for more bike and scooter access in cities, as well as a demand for more infrastructure to support the safe use of such vehicles. Of the respondents, 80% said they support increasing the number of bike and scooter lanes in their city, while 78% want to create more space on roads for non-car transit options. As the craze of dockless vehicles continues to take over metropolitan hubs, it is likely that more cities will fast-track the development of protected bike lanes and push for more protections and rights for non-car commuters.
And, as more city residents understand the benefits of environmentally friendly shared mobility options, leading issues such as traffic congestion will be alleviated as a result. Portland, OR, for example, recently released an e-scooter pilot survey which indicated scooters are replacing car trips for both necessary transportation and for recreation. That survey found 62% of respondents were "extremely likely" to recommend shared e-scooters to a friend.
By surveying registered voters, Bird and Global Strategy Group took an interesting approach to analyzing how the current landscape of traffic, congestion and transportation may be impacted in upcoming local elections. In fact, a number of states will face related initiatives in the upcoming midterm elections, most notably in states including Colorado (Props. 109 and 110 both focus on transportation bonds to improve infrastructure and support projects regarding mass transit and bike paths) and Missouri (Prop. D would increase tax on gasoline).