Ridership Profile Shifts Slightly After Divvy’s First Full Summer

Divvy trips per day
Trips on Divvy bike-share peaked during July of this year.

The monthly count of bike-share trips in Chicago peaked this July at 410,392 trips, according to a new data release from Divvy. Trips then declined by five percent from July to August, which is traditionally a slow month due to vacations. While there’s now a full year of trip data on Divvy, the staged rollout last fall (through October) kept ridership relatively low during the first few months.

Nearly two-thirds of Divvy trips in the first half of 2014 were made by subscribers, up from 53 percent in the second half of 2013. This could be an indication that local residents, now familiar with the system, have switched from occasional day passes to annual passes, or it could be tied to the shift in seasons.

The number of annual-subscriber trips taken by women remains low — below the level of women who commute by bike in Chicago (as counted by the Census) and the number of women who use bike-share in other cities. In 2013, women subscribers made just 21 percent of trips, which increased to 23 percent of trips in 2014 through June.

Women who subscribe continue to take longer trips than men who subscribe. This year, up to June, female subscribers on average cycled 14 minutes and 23 seconds, while male subscribers cycled 11 minutes and 33 seconds.

Trip duration for both genders increased slightly from 2013 to 2014, which could be due to the growing reach of the station network (making longer trips possible) and the growing subscriber base.

The top ten stations where riders – both subscribers and 24-hour pass holders – began their trips pretty much stayed the same, with several changing ranking, and only two dropping off from 2013 to 2014. Of these top ten stations, the number of trips starting at Navy Pier increased by 32 percent and trips from Theater on the Lake, at Fullerton Avenue and Lake Shore Drive, increased by 69 percent. The other stations increased by less than six percent, while the Museum Campus and Millennium Park stations saw declines in trips begun of 25 percent and 28 percent, respectively.


Most popular stations to start a trip

2013 July-December 2014 January-July
1 Streeter Dr & Illinois St (Navy Pier) Streeter Dr & Illinois St
2 Millennium Park Lake Shore Dr & Monroe St
3 Lake Shore Dr & Monroe St Theater on the Lake
4 Michigan Ave & Oak St Clinton St & Washington Blvd
5 Clinton St & Washington Blvd Michigan Ave & Oak St
6 Museum Campus Canal St & Madison St
7 McClurg Ct & Illinois St Millennium Park
8 Michigan Ave & Lake St Lake Shore Dr & North Blvd
9 Canal St & Jackson Blvd Canal St & Adams St
10 Theater on the Lake Museum Campus
  • “This year, up to June, female subscribers on average cycled 14 minutes and 23 seconds, while male subscribers cycled 11 minutes and 33 seconds.”

    Are men riding faster?

  • R.A. Stewart

    Nah, we just can’t focus that long. :-)

  • Surely an estimated speed could be derived from the data for each trip.

  • It could, assuming each person took the same route and that route was somehow figured out.

    For example, Divvy Brags calculates your mileage by assuming you took the route recommended first by Google Maps (which have been obtained for every station pair ahead of time).

  • I thought of mentioning this but we can’t tell from the data.

    Men and women may be taking different routes

  • skyrefuge

    We do have the speed data for one particular route: the Chicago Triathlon! In the Divvy Wave, men (n=28) averaged 16.8mph, while women (n=40) averaged 14.2mph. So men were 19% faster than women, compared to men’s 25% shorter ride times reported by Steven from Divvy’s data. Make of that what you will! :-)

  • Like trips could be analyzed. Hard to imagine that in the aggregate trip routing between two points is all that different.

  • forensicgarlic

    like an alleycat race, it’s on the riders to find the shortest distance from point A to point B. Also thanks for the divvy brags mention, I handn’t heard of that before.

  • I would guess that faster riders prefer faster routes?

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