As the nation celebrates Bike Month in May, Washington state has one more reason to cheer: For the sixth consecutive year, the League of American Bicyclists has named Washington No. 1 “Bicycle-Friendly State” in the country.
A number of events are coming up, including national Bike to School Day on Wednesday, May 8. Participating schools, such as Cedar Valley Community School in Lynnwood, have planned special events to encourage students to ride their bikes or walk to school with parents, teachers and community leaders.
Later, on May 17, the Edmonds Bicycle Advocacy Group and other local sponsors will have a Bike to Work station with coffee, scones, and prizes at Vatika India Cuisine, 102 Main Street from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m., with a 7:30 am Celebration Ride starting at Edmonds PCC Natural Market parking lot, at 9803 Edmonds Way.
The website Bikely.com shows a number of routes in Edmonds of varying challenge levels. What are your favorite places to cycle? Tell us in the comments.
Strong partnerships among the state’s cities, counties, advocacy organizations, state agencies and transportation providers form the foundation of Washington’s success in improving conditions for bicycling and walking.
“This title confirms that Washington is on the right path in recognizing bicycling as part of a sustainable, multimodal transportation system,” said Gov. Jay Inslee. “Bicycling is embraced by Washingtonians as a form of transportation that enhances our quality of life and honors our environment.”
The League of American Bicyclists evaluated the state's cycling success in categories, including legislation and enforcement, policies and programs, infrastructure and funding, education and encouragement and evaluation and planning.
“We’ve made significant gains in improving the conditions for bicyclists and pedestrians in our state, but there much more that we can do through partnerships and low-cost enhancements,” said Washington's Secretary of Transportation Lynn Peterson. “The League’s evaluation reinforces the need to include bicycle facilities as part of our transportation programs.”
WSDOT supports bicycling through a number of efforts including:
- State Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan that guide investments and policy decisions based on goals to improve connections, increase coordination and reduce traffic congestion
- Pedestrian and Bicycle Program grants that improve infrastructure and facilities for walking and biking
- Safe Routes to School that improve conditions and provide information for children who walk or bike to school
- Designing for bicyclists to include bike and pedestrian facilities in urban-area construction and preservation projects
- Washington State Bicycle and Pedestrian Documentation Project, which tracks the number of cyclists and pedestrians annually to identify opportunities for improvement
The League of American Bicyclists promotes bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation and works through advocacy and education for a bicycle‐friendly America.
Information courtesy of the Washington State Department of Transportation.