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Research Projects

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

Policies and Strategies for Cargo Bike Goods Movement in California

Project Summary

Project number: PSR-21-42
Funding source: USDOT
Contract number69A3551747109
Funding amount: $37,001.00
Performance period4/1/22 – 3/31/23

Link to Final Report:
Research Brief

Project description

This white paper presents the synthesis of the literature on the use of cargo bikes for urban goods movement with a particular focus on four barrier and opportunity domains: physical and spatial; economic; political and legal; and social and cultural. It also includes research particularly relevant to California cities, although many of the studies reported were conducted outside California because we found a lack of evidence within California. The barriers to shifting from trucks and vans to cargo bikes for a variety of good movements remain tall in California. They include, among many, a need for a significant shift in the delivery landscape that requires collaboration across different organizations, and support from the local and state level that includes the development of urban consolidation hubs, investment in bike infrastructure, and strict restrictions on larger delivery vehicles. In addition, it may also require initial incentives to freight operators to offset the costs of shifting to cargo bike logistics. Although the barriers are large, the need is paramount, given the rise in e-commerce and local goods movement. Motivated by this need, and with targeted efforts to overcome these barriers, synergistic benefits are possible including a safer and more bike-friendly road network supportive of both personal active transportation and cargo-bike goods movement. These outcomes will help achieve wide-ranging goals in transportation planning, including GHG reduction, improvements to public health through physical activity, and emission reductions, among others.


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