Cyclists are shoppers and every study going demonstrates that facilitating shopping-by-bike boosts business. Local residents are not the only individuals spending when biking- a recent Tourism Oregon study found that bicycle tourists spend 20% more per visit than any other category of tourist. Last year, Councillor Jeff Leiper asked cyclists to record their spending while locked to the Fairmont/Wellington bike corral – and over the season (May to October) there were over 6000 dollars logged.
This year, IBikeIBuy is being expanded in an effort to record even more economic activity. Anyone who spends money while shopping anywhere in the urban core is being invited to tell us what they bought and how much they spent. The expanded effort is being supported by Councillors Fleury, Nussbaum, McKenney and Chernushenko whose wards encompass popular retail districts including Wellington St West, Richmond Rd, Somerset St, Preston St, Bank St, the Byward Market, Rideau St, Beechwood Ave, and Montreal Rd.
To collect as much information as possible, the Kitchissippi Councillor, with collaboration from David Hicks, digital marketing consultant, designer & developer, are adding new tools and technology to assist cyclists to enter their spending. The existing IBikeIBuy website has been updated to support GPS and automatically find nearby retail locations to make adding purchases faster and more detailed. A new mobile app has also been developed to make the process even easier. And, select partners including Equator Coffee and the Hintonburg Public House will use Bluetooth beacon technology to make recording information even smoother.
“There are multiple locations across the urban core where bike parking is in short supply. At coffee shops and pubs, grocery stores, drug stores, and the full spectrum of shops and services, bike racks are often overflowing or sometimes even non-existent. When the City, shopkeeps, BIAs and communities provide cycling facilities, we build a stronger, more prosperous, more resilient city,” says Jeff Leiper.
“IBikeIBuy helps capture data about how cyclists are spending money in our communities and is an innovative way to get stakeholders engaged in making informed decisions on expanding cycling infrastructure around the city,” he adds.
The new IBikeIBuy site is online and ready to record spending immediately. Over the next weeks, the app will launch, marketing collateral will be distributed, and new partners announced.
Watch kitchissippiward.ca for announcements and news related to IBikeIBuy.ca all summer.
— Catherine McKenney (@cmckenney) June 2, 2016