This week we are spotlighting Utah as a place to look to for bicycle urbanism. Mikael Colville-Andersen, author of Copenhagenize and CEO of Copenhagenize Design Company, looks at Salt Lake City, Utah as one of his five favorite cities in America for bicycle infrastructure.
"Designs for Dutch-style, protected intersections were on the table in America back in the late 1960s in Davis, California but died a painful death of indifference. Davis put one in back in 2015, followed promptly by Salt Lake City two months later. The intersection of 200 S and 300 W is not a busy intersection but damn, it's great to see it in action. Wild to think how difficult such an intersection seems in the eyes of many American transportation planners and wilder to think how effortless it actually is to design and build. What makes this intersection extra cool is that it is attached to the 300 S cycle track - one of the best of its kind in the nation.
I find it interesting that in my international network, Salt Lake City is now on the map because of this protected intersection where the city - sorry SLC - didn't quite register on the the radar before it was built. Bike infrastructure as city branding is the new black." - Mikael Colville-Andersen
Bike Utah is the statewide, nonprofit bicycle advocacy and education organization. They are working to make Utah a better place to ride. Their vision is a Utah where bicycling contributes to livable, healthy communities; where networks of bike lanes, paths, and trails allow everyone to ride, regardless of age, ability, or income.
Over the past 3 years, Bike Utah has launched numerous programs and campaigns that have helped to shift how individuals and communities view bicycling as a means of transportation and recreation. Here is a quick overview of three of their efforts:
The Youth BEST is a 5-hour, on-bike program that is administered at schools, targeting students in the 4th to 7th grade range. Bike Utah provides a trained instructor, bicycles, helmets, and all other equipment at no cost for the duration of the program. Over the course of the program students learn about: the benefits of riding a bicycle; the rules of the road; helmet fitting; bicycle safety checks; navigating intersections; right of way; and avoiding hazards. Since the program launched in fall of 2016, more than 5,000 kids have participated. hey have increased their interest in riding and improved their knowledge of safe bicycling.
Wasatch Bike Plan
Currently 85% of Utah’s population lives in four counties along western boundary of the Wasatch Mountains (also known as the Wasatch Front). By 2050, the population in each of the four Wasatch Front counties is expected to increase anywhere from 52% to 136%. The goal of the Wasatch Bike Plan campaign is to create the future of bicycling along the Wasatch Front by initiating bicycle and pedestrian master plans in every community in all four Wasatch Front counties. Our lives don’t stop at community boundaries and neither should bike lanes and paths. When Bike Utah started the campaign two years ago, approximately 33% of the communities had active transportation plans. This figure is now just shy of 50%.
1,000 Miles Campaign
In May 2017, Utah’s Governor Herbert stated a goal of developing 1,000 miles of family-friendly bicycle lanes, paths, and trails, as it improves numerous aspects associated with living, working, and playing in Utah. The Governor designated Bike Utah as the nonprofit partner to carry out implementation of the 1,000 Miles Campaign. Through the 1,000 Miles Campaign, Bike Utah provides strategic planning, technical assistance, and financial resources so communities can begin or continue developing bicycling in their area. Safe, connected infrastructure is the biggest reason people choose to ride for recreation and transportation.
Find out more about Bike Utah and their other initiatives at bikeutah.org
Don't forget to enter our bike month sweepstakes below.