|Home News Bicycle Friendly Communities||
Boulder Goes Platinum; 10 New Communities Earn Designation
Biggest Round of Applications Since Program's Inception
Ten new communities were honored with the League of American Bicyclists prestigious Bicycle Friendly Community designation. This was the program’s biggest application cycle to date—51 communities applied for the designation. There are one gold, one silver and eight bronze communities awarded, and 19 communities renewed their designations. Boulder, Colo., a renewing community, was promoted to Platinum, joining Portland, Ore. and Davis, Calif. as the only cities in the U.S. to have earned this top designation.
“We are tremendously excited by the results of the latest round of Bicycle Friendly Community designations,” said Andy Clarke, president of the League of American Bicyclists. “Not only has Boulder broken through to the Platinum level but four great bicycling communities – Fort Collins, Colo., Seattle, Wash., Jackson, Wyo., and Stanford University, Calif. – have received the Gold designation. Each community has high levels of bicycle use and has demonstrated a commitment to improving conditions for all types of cyclist from the student and avid mountain biker to the casual visitor and everyday commuter.”
All BFCs enjoy quality of life benefits to which many other communities aspire. We are delighted the BFC program is providing a helpful road map for communities to make that transition.
The League awards this four-year designation to communities that have made impressive, measurable efforts to integrate bicyclists into the community. There are four levels—platinum, gold, silver and bronze—awarded twice each year.
“Boulder well deserves the platinum designation,” said Clarke, “because they are actually delivering the quality of life benefits to which so many other communities aspire. The number of single occupant vehicles is falling; bike use, walking and transit is increasing. People can get almost everywhere in town by bike – and it’s a normal thing to do.”
“The city isn’t perfect, however. Bicycle use is still low by comparison to equivalent cities in Europe, and there are still clear needs for improved infrastructure and better access to mountain biking in the city. The really great news we can share with you today is that Boulder is categorically not stopping at Platinum! The Mayor, city council, city manager and the entire Boulder bicycling community is committed to making those improvements and being a world class city for bicyclists.”
Nineteen communities renewed their designation, with five moving up. Boulder, Colo. was promoted from gold to platinum, Fort Collins, Colo., Jackson, Wyo., and Stanford University, Calif. moved from silver to gold, and the Presidio of San Francisco moved from Bronze to Silver.
This designation is one with real meaning—it is difficult to earn and important to renew. There are now 96 awarded communities in 32 states. Since the program’s inception in 2003, 245 communities have applied. “In this round, 10 communities were given honorable mentions,” Clarke said. “It is important to recognize communities as they begin to build bicycle friendliness into their network. But a designation only goes to communities with established records in two or more of the five categories.”
The five categories local and national reviewers look at are:
The honorable mentions are:
Notable features of this round of designations include:
Wood River Valley, Idaho has 427 miles of single track, 50 miles of paved multiple use pathways, and 50 miles of quiet, rural paved roads that are fantastic bicycle routes.
Arvada, Colo. has 189 miles of off-street facilities and 74 miles of on-street facilities, and fully 50 percent of the community’s arterial streets have bike lanes for cyclists.
Billings, Mont. has been raising support and awareness for bicycling through a broad array of bicycle-oriented events which use the outdoor and recreational amenities unique to the region.
Columbia, S.C. teaches bicycling education at every school in the city (within physical education classes). The city also distributes hundreds of bicycle bookmarks that include bicycle safety tips and South Carolina bicycle laws in English and Spanish.
Oceanside, Calif. has more than 70 miles of bike lanes, 17 miles of bike routes and nine miles of bike paths. Additional facilities and gap closures are already being planned and some were being implemented before the recent Bicycle Master Plan update. In addition, there are bike lockers at all commuter rail stations and transit centers, and all the buses can carry bikes.
Roseville, Calif. hosts an annual (14 years running) bike rodeo known as Roseville Bikefest in the fall of each year, and has 49 bicycle lockers at local employment sites and transit stops. The bicycle lockers are available for long-term parking for employees and commuters.
Salem, Ore. has a Smart Commuter Program that reimburses city employees who bike or walk to work up to $100 per year for commuting expenses.
Thousand Oaks, Calif. has a Bikesafe outreach program that teaches children across the city how to safely ride a bike, and educated 7,000 students during Public Works Week in 2008..
About the BFC Program & the League