Update: I received an email from Bicycling Magazine’s press people, which included the criteria they used to select the bike-friendly cities.
The magazine compiles this list only every other year, to give cities time to address challenges with their infrastructure, and this year Tucson came in at number 9. Criteria that goes into developing the list includes: number of bike lanes, municipal bike racks, bike boulevards, government interest in cycling improvements, bike culture, etc. Additionally, interviews with local advocates, bike shops, and a variety of other experts are conducted to help formulate this list.
Jonathan Maus over at BikePortland.org has a story about why Portland dropped to number two and might explain why Tucson is behind cities like New York.
In straight comparisons of what Mooney calls “boring but important” statistics, Portland would be #1, but Bicycling gave the title to Minneapolis for their intangibles. Mooney said “we’re giving a lot of momentum credit here” and she acknowledged that the way Minneapolis’s community has bonded around the “winter riding spirit” figured largely into their decision.
This morning Bicycling magazine released their list of America’s top 50 bicycle-friendly cities.
Tucson ranked ninth this year. Tempe/Phoenix ranked 15th and Scottsdale was ranked 20th.
According to the magazine Tucson was ranked ninth in part because of the high number of bike lanes.
“All new street construction and reconstruction must include bike lanes. The East Pima Region already has more than 700 miles of designated bikeways. Plus, it’s sunny year-round.”
Surprisingly, Portland wasn’t this year’s number one city. That honor went to Minneapolis.
The top 10 are:
1. Minneapolis, MN
2. Portland, OR
3. Boulder, CO
4. Seattle, WA
5. Eugene, OR
6. San Francisco, CA
7. Madison, WI
8. New York, NY
9. Tucson, AZ
10. Chicago, IL