Research from the Glasgow Centre for population Health has suggested that a 25 per cent surge in cycling in the city in the past three years is worth £4 million to the local economy annually.
Based on a widely used World Health Organisation formula, researchers pitch up at various sites across Glasgow every September to count cyclists for two days. Between 2009 and 2011, the average figure was around 4,378 trips, per day, by bike. The 2012 figure rose to 5,638.
Using this data and the WHO model, officials calculated that Glasgow’s economy is £4,348,538 a year better off due to decreased mortality rates and health service savings. The true benefit could be higher, however, as the formula doesn’t account for ill health and related absenteeism from work.
The report, co-authored by GCPH researcher Fiona Crawford and Bruce Whyte, was earlier this week presented at St Andrews in the Square, Glasgow, where the researchers outlined their projections for further growth in cycling and associated benefits.
Data from the 2011 census is soon to be analysed to allow researchers to compare statistics and commuting patterns with Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee.
The Herald Scotland has more on the story, here.