At a breakfast briefing at the Interbike trade show in Las Vegas John Hickenlooper, Governor of Colorado, has announced his state will spend $100m over the next four years on cycling measures, including the provision of more urban bike lanes and more off-road trails for mountain bikers.
Boulder, Colorado, is now thought by many to have overtaken Davis, California, as the “bicycle capital” of America. It has 160 miles of bike paths and is also home to PeopleForBikes, an industry coalition of cycling suppliers and retailers. It was PeopleForBikes – formerly Bikes Belong – which sponsored today’s breakfast briefing with the Governor.
Hickenlooper said: “Our goal is to make Colorado the best state for biking in the country which will help fuel our robust economic growth and tourism industry, move us toward a cleaner environment and advance our goal of being the healthiest state in the nation.”
Colorado is ranked the most physically active states in the US (it still has an obesity rate of 23 percent).
The new four-year plan will allow Colorado to add to its off-road trail network as well as add bike lanes in cities. Some of the $100m budget will also be spent on improving motorists’ attitudes towards cyclists.
Colorado’s volunteer bike csar Ken Gart said: “We want to encourage riders of all shapes, sizes and abilities by making biking as safe and accessible as possible statewide.”
Tim Blumenthal, president of PeopleForBikes, said:
“Today, more than ever, PeopleForBikes is proud to call Colorado home. We will be excited to see the ripple effect across the country of the Governor’s dynamic plan for biking in Colorado: Which states will take today’s proclamation as a healthy challenge?”
Dan Grunig, executive director at Bicycle Colorado, a statewide cycle advocacy group, said:
“Bicycle Colorado is excited that more children, families and new cyclists will riding thanks to the improvements this funding will provide.”
He added: “Improved health and a stronger economy are other perks to come from this investment in better bicycling.”
Governor Hickenlooper is a member of the Democratic Party.