Tucson, a Bicycle Friendly Community

November 3rd, 2011 | By admin No Comments

Tucson’s mayor and city council have passed a policy to include bike lanes on all new street construction as well as on all reconstruction projects. Tucson has completed a number of innovative bridges to open up key blockages for cyclists, and Tucson and Pima County are working together as equal partners in a Safe Routes to Schools Program to offer facility and educational improvements to elementary and secondary schools in the region and cycling education for users of all ages.

Tucson and Pima County have also worked together to create a Share the Road guide for bicyclists and motorists that has been distributed to police, schools, libraries, bike shops, council offices and private businesses throughout the region.

In recent years, Tucson’s and the Pima Eastern Region’s biggest achievements have been in the area of increased education and enforcement efforts. The Pima County Bicycle and Pedestrian Program organizes bike rodeos for area schools and leads League of American Bicyclists education programs such as Traffic Skills 101 and 102, Kids 1 and 2, and commuting classes; more than 3,000 children and 600 adults take classes annually. Enforcement achievements include substantial targeted enforcement efforts, focusing on both cyclists and motorists in high bicycle-use areas, and implementation of a bicycle-driver diversion program to offer safety classes to bicyclists who receive citations for traffic infractions.

Nearly 660 miles of on-street bikeways exist in our region, including more than 100 miles of local street bike routes, 550 miles of bike lanes and paved shoulders, and eight miles of shared bus and bike lanes. We also have more than 70 miles of shared use paths for a total of approximately 732 miles of designated bikeways.

Tucson has achieve the Gold Level Bicycle Friendly Community designation by the LAB, which has energized officials and citizens alike and led to a greater awareness in all levels of government and the community of how essential biking is to the region.  The recognition is helping to create a genuine bike culture, whether it be for transportation, mountain biking, BMX, racing or for recreation.

What does all this mean to you and your family? It means you live in an area that is bicyclist-friendly and safe! So enjoy Tucson’s wonderful weather on the bike route of your choice, pedaling your way to a healthier and happier life!

Written in collaboration with Alison Dewey, program specialist, Bicycle Friendly America, League of American Bicyclists

Leave a Reply