Biking in Chicago and how to further improve infrastructure

tours Apr 27, 2020

There are numerous benefits of biking in a post-cycling world. It's not as simple as "everyone needs to bike more," they argue.

"We're not good enough as a city to be able to provide a place to ride a bike that's safe," Van Valkenburgh said. "We have to be better."

'Other cities are very ambitious'

It's been more than a decade since Van Valkenburgh led her staff through one of the most ambitious proposals for cycling infrastructure in Chicago: a bicycle sharing system in the Loop.

She was looking for a way to introduce more bike traffic to the Loop when her proposal was recommended for funding by the city's new Transportation Committee.

A lot of thought and research has been put into the benefits of cycling as part of the city's long-term development plans. Generally, researchers agree that cycling is a better option for anyone not already in a car.

Looking at London for example, work published in 2007 by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) found that adults who live in London are more likely to cycle in comparison to the rest of the UK.

According to this research, 8% of adults in the capital ride a bike for commuting every day. In comparison, the national average for all UK adults was 4%.

This was consistent across ages and gender groups, with teenagers and children more likely to cycle.


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