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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 16, 2005
LEAGUE DESIGNATES 16 BICYCLE FRIENDLY COMMUNITIES
Cities from Bend, Ore., to Boulder, Colo., to Burlington, Vt., recognized for improving conditions for bicyclists.
Washington, DC -- Sixteen cities across the United States can celebrate the start of national Bike to Work Week today with the news that the League of American Bicyclists has awarded them the coveted designation of “Bicycle Friendly Community”. The award, given at levels from Bronze to Platinum, recognizes those communities that are improving conditions for bicyclists and bicycling safety.
Designated BFC for the First Time:
“We salute these communities for their tremendous commitment to improving conditions for bicyclists,” said Andy Clarke, executive director of the League of American Bicyclists. “They are making the streets safer for bicycling, educating bicyclists and motorists to share the road, promoting a wide range of bicycling activities and even stepping up the enforcement of traffic laws to protect bicyclists.”
“The rewards are enormous,” continued Clarke. “These communities, and thousands of individual bicyclists within them, are benefiting from better health, improved air quality, less traffic congestion, energy conservation, and pure economics. Bicycling is an incredibly efficient means of travel – and that means a lot when gas is $2.50 a gallon!”
“We are delighted to welcome Chicago and Scottsdale to the “silver” level,” said Clarke. “Chicago is the biggest city by far to get a designation, and it takes a lot to make a difference in a city of almost three million people. From the Mayor on down, the City is committed to making bicycling a viable travel option for short trips, and they have a remarkable ally in the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation.”
Scottsdale has nationally recognized projects such as the Indian Bend Wash trail running through the heart of the community, and a growing network of streets that are bicycle-friendly. Scottsdale is clearly a bicycling destination for riders from the entire Phoenix metro area.
Other notable features of this round of applications include:
Boulder, Colo., and Santa Barbara, Calif. came very close to moving up a level – to Platinum and Gold respectively – with this year’s applications. The race is still on to be the first platinum level community in the nation.
Denver, Colo., is the first community to be downgraded, from Silver to Bronze. Commitment to implementing bicycling policies and programs has waned, according to reviewers.
Honorable Mentions. Several communities fell short of an award, but nonetheless deserve recognition for taking tremendous strides in one or more of the areas addressed in the application. Roswell, Ga., for example, is rapidly becoming a beacon for bicycle-friendliness in the otherwise challenging Atlanta metro area. Charlotte, NC is a major US city that has been built almost exclusively during the automobile era, and yet is making great strides towards retrofitting bicycling back into its community infrastructure. Other communities receiving an honorable mention were Grand Forks, ND; Las Cruces, NM; Port Townsend, Wash.; Springfield, Mo.; Tumwater, Wash.
About the BFC Program
About Bike to Work Week
In several communities, the League of American Bicyclists is promoting bike to work week with Shimano and Rodale, Inc., by giving away 50 bikes to deserving recipients. For more information on Biketown events, visit www.bicycling.com/biketown.
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