When someone talks about how they get around in a metropolis like a city, biking is probably not the first thing not to come to mind. That, however, is not the case for many cities across America.
Take, for instance, the sunny city of Los Angeles (LA). The beachside city of LA has a vast amount of bike paths that cross paths with each other as well as multiple rentable bikes sponsored by apps such as Uber and Lyft. These bike rentals were installed in an effort to combat pollution as well as the city’s horrible traffic problem.
Another big biking town is Portland Oregon, but not at all similar to LA. In Portland, there are so many people biking so often that many citizens don’t even see a need for protected bike lanes. In fact, Portland only has 5.3 miles of protected bike lanes, compared to, say, Seattle that has nearly 3 times as many protected lanes. There are plans to build protected lanes on as many as 450 different roadways in Portland. While the citizens of Portland don’t feel like they need the protection, it brings a sense of security to tourists and new bikers who wish to get around the city by bike.
The Windy City of Chicago is another major biking city with over 176 total miles of protected and buffered lanes, making it one of the largest biking cities in America! The city also has one of the busiest bike trails in the country, the Lakefront Trail, which the city was able to make safer thanks to a $12 million gift from private donors. The city also spends a large amount on bike sharing stations in underserved neighborhoods, mainly the south and west sides of Chicago. It is estimated that by 2020, Chicago will have so many bike sharing stations that every citizen will live within half a mile of a bike route.
New York is one of the largest biking cities in America, with Central Park now being completely car-free! However, even with 6 car-free city miles, the city still sees the need to expand its bikeability by installing around 5 miles of protected lanes a year, with an estimated 460 total protected miles. The city also has 50 intersections that allow bikes to cross before the cars do, mainly using pedestrian signals to make these intersections safer for the city’s bikers. These improvements have led to an astonishing 49% of New Yorkers commuting by bike at least a few times a month.
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