Auburn Honored with League's Bicycle-Friendly Community Award to Celebrate National Bike Month TM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 3, 2004
Contact: Patrick J. McCormick
League of American Bicyclists
Phone: 202-822-1333; Fax: 202-822-1334
Email: [email protected]
Washington, DC—The League of American Bicyclists is kicking off National Bike Month TM by honoring Auburn, Alabama and ten other communities with its prestigious Bicycle Friendly Community designation. Marjorie Holderer, Vice President of the Alabama Bicycle Coalition, will present the award on behalf of the League at the Auburn City Council meeting beginning at 7:30 PM on Tuesday, May 4. Auburn has earned the bronze-level of the Bicycle Friendly Community (BFC) award, indicating significant improvement since its Honorable Mention ranking in 2003.
Andy Clarke, Executive Director of the League of American Bicyclists, congratulated Auburn and the other award winners and said, "What better way to kick off National Bike Month TM (www.bikemonth.com) than celebrating cities such as Auburn that show what's possible? Given the choice, people will and do ride their bikes. Bicycle Friendly Communities are special places, with a heightened sense of community spirit and an uncommon devotion to improving their quality of life. With political commitment, focused investment in infrastructure and policies, and broad community involvement, cities and towns can become better places not only to bicycle but also to live. The rewards for residents are huge: greater opportunities to lead active lifestyles; improved air quality, and increased travel choices."
staff and reviewers consider several factors before granting a community
BFC status, including:
Auburn has active efforts to promote bicycling and to teach bike safety education, particularly in its five elementary schools. All fourth graders go through the school system's bicycle safety program, which recently acquired a bicycle trailer to transport and store bikes that are provided for students. To promote bicycling, the Auburn Bicycle Committee sponsors an annual Bike to School competition, in which the homeroom class with the greatest number of children riding to school wins a pizza party. Additionally the Auburn Bicycle Committee offers a Bike Bash, which brings together cyclists of all ages and skill levels for a leisurely ride highlighting Auburn's newest bicycle facilities. The Bike Bash event also includes entertainment, door prizes, helmet checks, bicycle safety inspections and local bike club information. This year, the committee will offer the League of American Bicyclists Road I Course, have a trail clean-up day, and release the first edition of the Auburn Bicycle Tours Guide, which contains maps and descriptions of recommended bicycling routes throughout the city.
The League commends Auburn for regularly maintaining its bicycle facilities, such as its arterial bike lanes, to ensure they are usable by local cyclists, and for placing bike racks on its buses. Auburn has an ambitious bicycle plan within its Auburn 2020 plan that will expand the current bicycle network into a comprehensive system. The plan recognizes some shortcomings in previous efforts and seeks “to make the City a place where riding a bicycle is safe, convenient, enjoyable and an accepted mode of travel.”
Boulder, Colorado was granted the League's gold-level BFC award. Silver-level award winners include Gainesville, Florida; Olympia, Washington; and Tucson, Arizona. Bronze level awards were awarded to Ashland, Oregon; Carrboro, North Carolina; Longmont, Colorado; Mountain View, California; Portage, Michigan; and Rockville, Maryland, as well as Auburn. An Honorary Mention was given to Milpitas, California. The League has yet to bestow its highest-level platinum award to any communities.
The League's Bicycle Friendly Community Campaign is a national grassroots effort to increase the number of trips made by bike, promote physical fitness, and help make communities more livable. The Campaign works in the most effective way possible-town by town, city by city-to encourage bicycling and achieve a bicycle-friendly America. The Campaign is supported by generous grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Bikes Belong Coalition.
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The League of American Bicyclists promotes bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation, and works through advocacy and education for a bicycle-friendly America. The League represents the interests of America's 50 million bicyclists, including its 300,000 members and affiliates. For more information or to support the League, visit www.bikeleague.org and www.bicyclefriendlycommunity.org . May is National Bike Month TM ; visit www.bikemonth.com for safe cycling tips, promotional ideas, and events in your area.
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The League of American Bicyclists, 1612 K Street NW, Suite 800 Washington, DC 20006-2802
phone - 202-822-1333 fax - 202-822-1334 email - [email protected]