Bicycle Friendly Community Program

Pueblo...becoming a Bicycle Friendly Community

What is a Bicycle Friendly Community (BFC)?

A Bicycle Friendly Community (BFC) is a community that actively promotes bicycling for transportation, recreation, exercise, and sport. Local government commits to an action plan with measurable goals, a complete streets policy and network of all facilities. Each community is rated according to the five Es of:

  1. Engineering: Community is working toward a comprehensive, connected and well-maintained bicycling network; bike parking is readily available throughout the community; Complete streets ordinance or another policy that mandates the accommodation of cyclists on all road projects.
  2. Enforcement: Law enforcement receives training on the rights and responsibilities of all road users and has a liaison with the cycling community; local ordinances treat bicyclists equitably; law enforcement or other public safety officers have bike patrols; targeted enforcement to encourage cyclists and motorists share the road safely.
  3. Education: Bike-safety programs for adults and community-wide Safe Routes to School program that includes bicycling education for on-road and multi-use trail routes; community education for motorists and cyclists on their rights and responsibilities as road users; mentorship for new bicycle commuters; number of League Cycling Instructors in the community; other ways to distribute safety information to cyclists and motorists including bike maps, tip sheets, or part of driver’s education courses.
  4. Encouragement: community has an up-to-date bicycle map; celebrates Bike Month with community rides, Bike to Work Day or media outreach to encourage cycling; hosts major community cycling event or ride; has a bicycle advocacy group or cycling club; has route finding signage.
  5. Evaluation: community has a comprehensive bicycle plan, how much of it has been implemented and what are the next steps for improvement; has a plan or program to reduce cyclist/motor vehicle crashes; has a Bicycle Advisory Committee that meets regularly; has a bicycle program manager.

And most important, a Bicycle Friendly Community has people riding bikes!

Reasons to Pursue Bicycle Friendly Community Recognition:

  • Health of the people – physical activity reduces heart and lung disease, diabetes, cancer, obesity
  • Health of the environment – improve air quality, transportation options, stormwater management, habitat preservation
  • Government Finances - $100 parks 2 bikes while $40,000 per car space in a parking garage; 20 bike cops = 1 police cruiser; bicycling increases road user capacity at minimal cost
  • Local economic boost – Bicycle tourism and rides are big business opportunities. Bicycle vacation is rated #3 outdoor vacation activity. 80% of businesses rated BFC status is good for their business
  • Improved quality of life equals economic development. Home buyers and businesses look for QOL measures such as walking and bicycling options in a community
  • Equity equals freedom of movement for 1/3 of population unable to drive, bicycling serves all ages and incomes and increases accessibility to transit
  • Freedom from congested roads. 40% of all trips are 2 miles or less and 90% are made by car but could be by bicycle.
  • Energy independence. Bicycling is the most energy efficient means of transportation especially as fuel prices rise.
  • Bicycling is a solution to many local issues! There are many powerful public policy reasons for improving bicycling conditions and making it safer.

Applications are taken each March and August for recognizing communities nationwide that are promoting bicycling and health promotion in their community.

  • An award ceremony and formal recognition as a platinum, gold, silver or bronze rated community takes place in May and October.
  • Communities may renew and earn higher level BFC status every four years.
  • Pueblo is just starting to become more bicycle friendly and this application process could be a learning process helping to educate and guide local leaders, planners and bicycle advocates as much as they are designed to evaluate our community.