Date of Award

Fall 1-6-2012

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


Public Health

First Advisor

Christine Stauber

Second Advisor

Olga Lucia Sarmiento

Third Advisor

Frances McCarty



Background: The Ciclovia program (60.3 miles of streets temporarily closed to motorized vehicles and open to pedestrians) and the Ciclorutas (186.4 miles bicycle paths network) represent two policy and built environment approaches that have been implemented in Bogota, Colombia to increase access to recreational and physical activity (PA) opportunities and promote active transportation. Both programs have other potential public health outcomes such as quality of life and social capital. Both physical activity and social capital have been demonstrated to be strongly related with health. The purpose of this study was to describe and compare the participants from Ciclovia and Cicloruta and to explore how program usage relates to public health outcomes including, physical activity, social capital and equity.

Methods: Analysis based on secondary data obtained from two surveys, one conducted in the Ciclovia and the other in the Ciclorutas in Bogota, Colombia. First, the general characteristics of the users of both programs were described and compared using the Pearson chi-square test. Second, a principal component analysis (PCA) was conducted to reduce the number of SC variables from the Ciclovia survey, by using a varimax (orthogonal) rotation method. A binary logistic regression adjusted model was developed to examine the relationship between frequency of participation on the Ciclovia and perceived SC levels. In addition, two adjusted multivariate logistic regression models were conducted to examine associations between meeting the PA recommendations with the characteristics of program use/participation.

Results: The majority of the Ciclovia participants reported meeting the PA recommendation in leisure time (59.5%), whereas near all Cicloruta participants reported to meet the recommendations by cycling for transportation (70.5%). The safety perception was higher among Ciclovia users with 51.2% of those surveyed having reported feeling safe at the Ciclovia with respect to traffic and accidents and 42.4% with regard to crime. Results from the logistic regressions showed that participants who reported more frequent participation in the Ciclovia program were more likely to have a higher SC perception (OR=2.0, 95%CI=1.4-2.8), those who reported regular participation in the program had increased odds of meeting the PA recommendation in leisure time (OR=1.7, 95%CI=1.1-2.4), as well as those who reported to perform vigorous (OR=4.9, 95%CI=2.5-9.2) and moderate (OR=1.9, 95%CI=1.2-3.0) physical activity during the Ciclovia. For the Ciclorutas males (OR=1.94, 95%CI=1.2-3.2), regular Cicloruta users (OR=10.18, 95%CI=6.1-16.8), and Cicloruta users who reported participation in the Ciclovia over the last 12 months (OR=1.6, 95%CI=1.1-2.2), were more likely to meet the PA recommendation by cycling for transportation.

Conclusions: The Ciclovia program and Cicloruta system represent two policy and environmental approaches that have the potential to equitably promote physical activity and provide a mobility alternative in complex urban settings such as the city of Bogota. Specifically the Ciclovia program also provides enhanced social environments in which the program users also feel safer.


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