Bike to Work Day

Members of the APHA staff observe Bike to Work Day 2016. Photo by APHA

On Friday, May 19, APHA urges commuters across the nation to observe Bike to Work Day! Sponsored by the League of American Bicyclists, the day marks the pinnacle of Bike to Work Week, May 15-19. This is the heart of Bike to Work Month, which encourages Americans to give the active transportation option a try to better understand its benefits.

More and more people are realizing that bicycling to work, school and beyond helps incorporate physical activity into the day, saves money on commuting, boosts the local economy and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. As a result, bicycling as a form of active transportation is on the rise, according to the Bicycling and Walking in the United States: 2016 Benchmarking Report by the Alliance for Biking and Walking.

APHA and the Institute of Transportation Engineers, in partnership with the League of American Bicyclists, developed the benchmarking report into an interactive website to help accelerate the momentum around bicycling and walking — a healthy and safe alternative to driving alone. Interested in learning how your state or city ranks in the bicycling and walking movement? Check out www.bikingandwalkingbenchmarks.org.

“APHA believes in creating communities that support active living for everyone,” says Katherine Robb, policy analyst at APHA. “Unfortunately, throughout the U.S., people must weigh real concerns about lack of sidewalks and bicycle lanes as they decide whether or not to actively commute to their destination.” The report and its user-friendly website help advocates assess bicycling and walking in their communities and provide direction on how to support active living options.

The challenge isn’t just one of planning and design, though. Other barriers to bicycling exist as well. Almost half of trips in the U.S. span a distance of only three miles or less — an easy bicycle ride for those able to take advantage of that option. Yet many of these trips are taken by car. Bike to Work Day is one way to promote bicycling as a shift away from a car-centric paradigm.

We encourage you to get involved this Bike to Work Day — whether it be biking to work, joining a bicycle advisory board or organizing an advocacy day to get more bike lanes in your neighborhood. Let’s live active, starting with Bike to Work Day!

Visit our website to learn more about the connection among transportation, healthy community design and climate change.