In September, the League of American Bicyclists (LAB) released their first annual Ranking of Bicycle Friendly States. They sent questionnaires to state bicycle coordinators covering six key areas: legislation; policies and programs; infrastructure; education and encouragement; evaluation and planning; and enforcement. The highest scoring states were Washington, Wisconsin, Arizona, Oregon and Minnesota. Those of you out riding Texas roads and trails daily, weekly and monthly won’t be surprised to hear that we still have a lot of work to do in the Lone Star State!
Overall, Texas was ranked 30 out of the 50 states. While Texas got credit for its rumble strip policy with 6 feet of clearance, it got low marks for lack of a bike master plan, and for spending low levels of funding on bicycle projects. LAB did note that Austin is one of their designated Bicycle Friendly Communities.
According to Andy Clarke, president of LAB, Washington state ranked number one because of its “model bike laws, signed and mapped statewide bike route network, dedicated funding from the state for bicycle related programs and projects, and an active statewide bicycle advisory committee.”