OK, fess up. Who didn’t ride a bike to work today? Well it had to be some of you because Portland is no longer considered America’s No. 1 bike city.
New York, Chicago and Minneapolis (boo) are listed as the country’s top three bike-friendly cities in Bicycle Magazine’s biennial ranking.
And what do these three have that we don’t (besides unbelievably cold winters)? Miles of new protected bike lanes and bike shares. It’s a wonder that Washington, D.C., didn’t bump us from our No. 4 slot.
The Oregonian reports that Bicycle Magazine takes into account what cities have done lately for bikers.
“If we didn’t, it could get boring and Portland would be number one every time” said Bicycle Magazine reporter Ian Dille in an interview with the newspaper. “We look at who is taking an advanced style on bicycling policy issues and infrastructure, and who is doing events and activities to encourage bicycling.”
Bicycle Retailer reports that former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg invested in more than 350 miles of new protected bike lanes to encourage even the most timid of riders to get out on the road. And current Mayor Bill de Blasio is already working on doubling all bicycling trips in the city. There are currently 36,496 bicycle trips to work each day in the Big Apple, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
As far as bike shares go, the Portland Bureau of Transportation keeps pushing back development for the city’s own bike share system, which is now slated to start some time in 2015.
PBOT already tapped Portland-based Alta Bicycle Share, Inc. to install some 75 stations with 10 bikes each. But after the company’s supplier went bankrupt in January, Alta took up with 8D Technologies to install bike share systems.
So step up, Portland bikers (If you’re feeling inspired, you can always jump on the Bicycle Transportation Alliance’s Bike Commute Challenge bandwagon). We have until 2016 to get back on top.