The League of American Bicyclists released its 2014 Bicycle Friendly States ranking today and Ohio placed #16 nationally as being a leader in creating a bicycle friendly culture.
“Bicycling is a growing transportation choice and activity for many Ohioans,” said ODOT Director Jerry Wray. “We continue to support investment in programs and infrastructure which improve safety and connectivity.”
To help improve the state’s previous ranking by 50 percent, ODOT partnered with several communities, agencies, businesses, and bike advocacy groups, including the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Ohio Department of Health, Ohio Bicycle Federation, and Metropolitan Planning Organizations around the state, to enhance and encourage bicycle friendly education, investment and policy.
Ohio’s 2014 Bicycle Friendly Report Card recognizes improvements in education and encouragement through “Safe Routes to School,” “Share the Road,” and other local and regional programs encouraging safe bicycling and walking. In addition, Ohio was applauded for its state funding commitment to active transportation infrastructure, having a statewide advocacy group and including bicycle safety in its Strategic Highway Safety Plan.
ODOT lends support to local governments, governmental and non-governmental organizations to encourage, educate, plan, and design pedestrian and bicycle facilities. Recent active transportation investments include $2.8 million on SR 32 in Clark County and $3 million on US 62 and $1 million on Summit and Fourth St. in Franklin County. As well, 24 Safe Routes to School projects worth $8.6 million will begin construction this summer, which will provide safer access for students to walk or bike to school.
Statewide, Ohio has 2,043 miles of sidewalk on US and State Routes, 4,207 miles of bikeways and 13 bikeway trails of national significance.
For more information on the League of American Bicyclists, visit www.bikeleague.org.