Taking Up Cycling After Residential Relocation

Built Environment Factors


      To successfully stimulate cycling, it is necessary to understand the factors that facilitate or inhibit cycling. Little is known about how changes in the neighborhood environment are related to changes in cycling behavior.


      This study aimed to identify environmental determinants of the uptake of cycling after relocation.


      The RESIDential Environment Project (RESIDE) is a longitudinal natural experiment of people moving into new housing developments in Perth (Western Australia). Self-reported usual transport and recreational cycling behavior, as well as self-reported and objective built environmental factors were measured before and after residential relocation. Participants who did not usually cycle at baseline in 2003–2004 were included in the study. Logistic regression models were used to relate changes in built environmental determinants to the probability of taking up cycling after relocation (2005–2006). Analyses were carried out in 2010–2011.


      At baseline, 90% (n=1289) of the participants did not cycle for transport and 86% (n=1232) did not cycle for recreation. After relocation, 5% of the noncyclists took up transport-related cycling, and 7% took up recreational cycling. After full adjustment, the uptake of transport-related cycling was determined by an increase in objective residential density (OR=1.54, 95% CI=1.04, 2.26) and self-reported better access to parks (OR=2.60, 95% CI=1.58, 4.27) and other recreation destinations (OR=1.57, 95% CI=1.12, 2.22). Commencing recreational cycling mostly was determined by an increase in objective street connectivity (OR=1.20, 95% CI=1.06, 1.35).


      Changes in the built environment may support the uptake of cycling among formerly noncycling adults.
      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to American Journal of Preventive Medicine
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Ainsworth B.
        • Haskell W.
        • Whitt M.
        • et al.
        Compendium of physical activities: an update of activity codes and MET intensities.
        Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2000; 32: S498-S504
        • Ainsworth B.E.
        • Haskell W.L.
        • Leon A.S.
        • et al.
        Compendium of physical activities: classification of energy costs of human physical activities.
        Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1993; 25: 71-80
        • Pate R.R.
        • Pratt M.
        • Blair S.N.
        • et al.
        Physical activity and public health.
        JAMA. 1995; 273: 402-407
        • Hendriksen I.J.
        • Zuiderveld B.
        • Kemper H.C.
        • Bezemer P.D.
        Effect of commuter cycling on physical performance of male and female employees.
        Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2000; 32: 504-510
        • Lindsay G.
        • Macmillan A.
        • Woodward A.
        Moving urban trips from cars to bicycles: impact on health and emissions.
        Aust N Z J Public Health. 2011; 35: 54-60
        • Oja P.
        • Vuori I.
        • Paronen O.
        Daily walking and cycling to work: their utility as health-enhancing physical activity.
        Patient Educ Couns. 1998; 33: S87-S94
        • Oja P.
        • Titze S.
        • Bauman A.
        • et al.
        Health benefits of cycling: a systematic review.
        Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2011; 21: 496-509
        • Giles-Corti B.
        • Foster S.
        • Shilton T.
        • Falconer R.
        The co-benefits for health of investing in active transportation.
        N S W Public Health Bull. 2010; 21: 122-127
        • Commission of the European Communities
        Towards a new culture for urban mobility.
        Green paper on urban mobility. European Commission, Brussels2007
        • Woodcock J.
        • Banister D.
        • Edwards P.
        • Prentice A.M.
        • Roberts I.
        Energy and transport.
        Lancet. 2007; 370: 1078-1088
        • Humpel N.
        • Owen N.
        • Leslie E.
        Environmental factors associated with adults' participation in physical activity: a review.
        Am J Prev Med. 2002; 22: 188-199
        • Wendel-Vos W.
        • Droomers M.
        • Kremers S.
        • Brug J.
        • van Lenthe F.
        Potential environmental determinants of physical activity in adults: a systematic review.
        Obes Rev. 2007; 8: 425-440
        • Owen N.
        • Humpel N.
        • Leslie E.
        • Bauman A.
        • Sallis J.F.
        Understanding environmental influences on walking: review and research agenda.
        Am J Prev Med. 2004; 27: 67-76
        • Goetzke F.
        • Rave T.
        Bicycle use in Germany: explaining differences between municipalities with social network effects.
        Urban Stud. 2011; 48: 427-437
        • Kamphuis C.B.
        • Giskes K.
        • Kavanagh A.M.
        • et al.
        Area variation in recreational cycling in Melbourne: a compositional or contextual effect?.
        J Epidemiol Community Health. 2008; 62: 890-898
        • Molina-Garcia J.
        • Castillo I.
        • Sallis J.F.
        Psychosocial and environmental correlates of active commuting for university students.
        Prev Med. 2010; 51: 136-138
        • Saelens B.E.
        • Sallis J.F.
        • Frank L.D.
        Environmental correlates of walking and cycling: findings from the transportation, urban design, and planning literatures.
        Ann Behav Med. 2003; 25: 80-91
        • Titze S.
        • Giles-Corti B.
        • Knuiman M.W.
        • et al.
        Associations between intrapersonal and neighborhood environmental characteristics and cycling for transport and recreation in adults: baseline results from the RESIDE study.
        J Phys Act Health. 2010; 7: 423-431
        • Troped P.J.
        • Saunders R.P.
        • Pate R.R.
        • Reininger B.
        • Addy C.L.
        Correlates of recreational and transportation physical activity among adults in a New England community.
        Prev Med. 2003; 37: 304-310
        • Giles-Corti B.
        • Knuiman M.
        • Pikora T.J.
        • et al.
        Can the impact on health of a government policy designed to create more liveable neighbourhoods be evaluated?.
        N S W Public Health Bull. 2007; 18: 238-242
        • Giles-Corti B.
        • Timperio A.
        • Cutt H.
        • et al.
        Development of a reliable measure of walking within and outside the local neighborhood: RESIDE's Neighborhood Physical Activity Questionnaire.
        Prev Med. 2006; 42: 455-459
        • Saelens B.E.
        • Sallis J.F.
        • Black J.B.
        • Chen D.
        Neighborhood-based differences in physical activity: an environment scale evaluation.
        Am J Public Health. 2003; 93: 1552-1558
        • Cerin E.
        • Saelens B.E.
        • Sallis J.F.
        • Frank L.D.
        Neighborhood Environment Walkability Scale: validity and development of a short form.
        Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2006; 38: 1682-1691
        • Leslie E.
        • Saelens B.
        • Frank L.
        • et al.
        Residents' perceptions of walkability attributes in objectively different neighbourhoods: a pilot study.
        Health Place. 2005; 11: 227-236
        • Frank L.D.
        • Schmid T.L.
        • Sallis J.F.
        • Chapman J.
        • Saelens B.E.
        Linking objectively measured physical activity with objectively measured urban form: findings from SMARTRAQ.
        Am J Prev Med. 2005; 28: 117-125
        • Frank L.D.
        • Saelens B.E.
        • Powell K.E.
        • Chapman J.E.
        Stepping towards causation: do built environments or neighborhood and travel preferences explain physical activity, driving, and obesity?.
        Soc Sci Med. 2007; 65: 1898-1914
        • Ajzen I.
        The theory of planned behavior.
        Organ Behav Hum Decis Process. 1991; 50: 179-211
        • Bandura A.
        Social foundations of thought and action: a social cognitive theory.
        Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs NJ1986
        • Giles-Corti B.
        • Timperio A.
        • Bull F.
        • Pikora T.
        Understanding physical activity environmental correlates: increased specificity for ecological models.
        Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 2005; 33: 175-181
        • Pikora T.
        • Giles-Corti B.
        • Bull F.
        • Jamrozik K.
        • Donovan R.
        Developing a framework for assessment of the environmental determinants of walking and cycling.
        Soc Sci Med. 2003; 56: 1693-1703
        • Panter J.R.
        • Jones A.
        Attitudes and the environment as determinants of active travel in adults: what do and don't we know?.
        J Phys Act Health. 2010; 7: 551-561
        • Spittaels H.
        • Foster C.
        • Oppert J.M.
        • et al.
        Assessment of environmental correlates of physical activity: development of a European questionnaire.
        Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act. 2009; 6: 39