Congratulations, Boulder, Davis and Portland. You top the list of the nation’s most bike-friendly cities.
So say the folks at the League of American Bicyclists, which has announced the 2010 Bicycle Friendly Community Awards. It’s the most comprehensive list of its kind and one cities often use to see how they stack up against each other. When compiling the list, the League considers things like bike lanes and other infrastructure, community outreach and whether cities have a dedicated bicycle program.
Sixteen of the 141 cities are making their first appearance on the list (.pdf), and most of the n00bs are east of the Mississippi. As you might expect, perennial bicycle havens Boulder, Colorado; Davis, California; and Portland, Oregon; led the list with platinum awards. But the list included cities nationwide, from Anchorage, Alaska to Gainesville, Florida.
“Communities from all areas of the country, climates and populations see bicycling as an integral component of building livable communities,” said Andy Clarke, League President. “The Bicycle Friendly Community program is recognizing those leading the way.”
So how does the League’s list compare to Bicycling magazine’s list of bike-friendly cities? You’ll find a lot of similarities, especially at the top, but the League’s list is broader because it includes small cities and towns. Bicycling doesn’t rank cities with fewer than 100,000 people on its top 50 list.
These lists come as bicycle advocates are making big strides, especially with transportation officials. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood recently made it clear that the needs of pedestrians and cyclists must be placed alongside, not behind, those of motorists.
If you’re city didn’t make the list, never fear. Your day is coming. With new cities being recognized for their bike friendliness and transportation policies finally recognizing those of use who ride, more and more cities are becoming bike-friendly.