Cleveland Climbs to No. 29 on Bicycling Mag's Ranking of Best Bike Cities

Courtesy Bike Cleveland
Highlighted by and credited to the city's work on the Detroit-Superior Bridge, Cleveland climbed to No. 29 from No. 41 on Bicycling mag's ranking of the 50 best bike cities in America.

The list, compiled every other year, factors in scores on safety (29/40 for Cleveland), friendliness (27/30), energy (13/20) and culture (7/10). You might quibble about our scores (anyone who's spent time biking down Franklin is probably eying that 27/30 friendliness score with suspicion), but, in general, Cleveland's sluggish progress on the bicycle front is at least moving forward.

Here's what Bicycling had to say:

The Cuyahoga River splits the city of Cleveland in half, and for years, bridge crossings were perilous for cyclists. Finally, that’s changing. A massive project on the Detroit Superior Bridge gave Cleveland cyclists their first protected bike lanes, shielding riders from fast-moving trucks and cars. “This is the culmination of a project that was planned 15 years ago,” says Jacob VanSickle, Bike Cleveland’s executive director. It’s not perfect— the west-bound lanes are still not protected, but between the bike boxes at traffic lights and bike-specific signals, and the protected lanes on the eastbound side, the project feels like solid progress.

Around town, painted bike lanes are popping up, especially near the entrances and exits of the area’s many off-street pathways. “We’re focusing on commuter corridors and now there’s much more of an ability to get around on them,” says Calley Mersmann, the bicycle and pedestrian coordinator for the city. VanSickle says that when it comes to downtown roadways, cars have previously taken priority, and getting parking removed or lanes taken away can be a fight. However, that’s also changing: “In the last five to six years we’ve taken more roadway away from cars and people are starting to realize it isn’t the apocalypse.”
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