Thursday, August 12, 2010

London Cycle Hire Scheme and Flow Analysis

If you are living in London, you'll probably noticed all these new blue bikes of the London Cycle Hire Scheme. It's a brilliant idea as the number of fellow cyclist will increase more and more, hopefully gaining some more respect from the people sitting in those tin boxes.
Anyway. I was wondering how did they managed to calculate correctly the flow of cycles, so that  you always have some of them available in your station. The obvious guess is that there will be cycles of flows towards the city centre and from the city centre, as most people will be using these for commuting. Having said that, Oliver O'Brein of CASA has created a web-GIS which shows you the currently available number of bikes at each dock with a time-series of bike availability through the past 24 hrs at each location. He also made a video which nicely shows the inward and outward flow. Really cool. You can find more details on his blog.