Research Projects

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Research Projects

STATUS: In Progress YEAR: 2021 TOPIC AREA: Integrating freight and passenger systems Vehicles and infrastructure CENTER: PSR

A Review of Cargo Bikes and Light Electric Freight Vehicle (LEFV) System Performance, Impacts, and Infrastructure Requirements

Project Summary

Project number: PSR-21-42
Funding source: Caltrans
Contract number: 65A0674
Funding amount: $35,180
Performance period: 1/1/2022 to 12/31/2022

Project description

The rise in home deliveries resulting from the shift from brick-and-mortar to online retail, and emergence of food and goods delivery services, have highlighted the need for improving the sustainability of the "last-mile" freight system. During the COVID-19 pandemic, which led to limits on travel and activities, the upward trend of increasing home deliveries may have had an added boost if people maintain newly acquired habits of eshopping and home-deliveries. The shift from trucks to cargo bikes and light electric freight vehicles (LEFVs) have, in some cases, the potential to provide an array of social benefits including the reduction in injuries and deaths associated with traffic collisions, increased operational efficiency, and potentially lead cities to prioritize the development of bike and LEFV lanes which can have many positive spillover effects for communities. In this white paper, we will review the existing evidence for when and where cargo bikes and LEFVs have the most potential to increase the sustainability of the freight system in the California context. We will evaluate the opportunities and challenges for the mass adoption in California, concentrating on operational, regulatory, and infrastructure aspects. We will synthesize the findings and provide planning and policy recommendations.


Dillon Fitch
Professional Researcher
1605 Tilia Street
Davis, CA 95616
United States
[email protected]