Study of travel times in Pune
On occasion of the World Bicycle Day (3rd June 2022), SPTM and Parisar jointly studied how long it takes to commute by cars and bicycles in Pune, during peak hours. 10 bicyclists and 7 car drivers participated in this study, and travelled a total of 64 km by bicycle and 53 km by car.
We found that in the morning peak hour (9-11 am), the bicycle was slower by 1:05 minutes per km. However, in the evening hours, when the traffic is generally higher, the difference dropped to 0:47 minutes per km. In fact, in one case we found that the cyclist covered the same stretch much faster than the car.
We can clearly see that a bicycle is a very very viable mode of commute in the city, even today. If your commute is 5-6 km, you won’t save more than 4-6 minutes if you use a car instead of a bicycle. And you will be doing a big service to our city by not polluting it. Yes, safety is a concern. And that’s why we demand that PMC encourages commuter cycling by providing facilities like cycle tracks and parking for bicycles.
Ashwini Sovani, a participant in the study, talks about cycling in Pune. She frequently bicycles to work 10 km one-way, and says that it takes about the same time as a car, in peak hours.
She says that commuter bicycling, even up to distances of 8-10 km, is easily possible in Pune. She adds that PMC should encourage cycling by providing cycle tracks and safe parking facilities.
Our study too underlines that bicycles can be our ticket to reducing pollution and congestion!