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Bicycling & Walking 2018 Benchmarking Report Skip to content

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Bicycling & Walking Benchmarking Report

Every two years, bicycling and walkability advocates take a deep dive into data about bicycling and walking trends in the United States. The results are in!

Bicycling & Walking in the United States

Visit the League of American Bicyclists website to download the 2018 bicycling and walking benchmarking report.

A benchmarking report on bicycling and walking in the United States first appeared in in 2007, when it was created by cycling and walkability advocates as a way to track data on the two transportation modes.
 
The 2018 edition, titled Bicycling & Walking in the United States: 2018 Benchmarking Report, is the first published by the League of American Bicyclists, which explains the report's purpose by noting, "People support biking and walking for a variety of reasons. The benchmarking report is intended to provide data from diverse sources, so report users can decide how best to present that data within their communities."
 
The hefty (nearly 400-page) publication contains data about bicycling and walking as related to community health and engagement, economic strength, safe and connected transportation options, among other subject areas. 

A Bit of Background

Congress first authorized federal funding to improve infrastructure projects intended for bicyclists and pedestrians in 1991.

While improvements have been made, the 2018 Benchmarking Report shows, states the League of American Bicyclists, "that more federal and state leadership is needed to make improvements in infrastructure. While forward-thinking advocates and city leaders have made progress for bicyclist and pedestrian safety at the local level, further leadership at the federal and state level is necessary to coordinate the design and implementation of cohesive, connected, and safe environments for bicycling and walking in America."

“There is a crisis in traffic safety and we have the tools to reduce the number of bicyclists and pedestrians killed on our roads every year," says Ken McLeod, policy director with the league and lead author of the 2018 Benchmarking Report. "We need leaders at the national and state levels to take action: adopt Complete Streets policies, draft and implement bike and pedestrian master plans, and build protected infrastructure.” 

 
Many of the report's safety findings align with those gathered in the 2019 Dangerous by Design report, which was published in January 2019 by the National Complete Streets Coalition with support from AARP.
 
AARP is also among the benchmarking report's funders since pedestrian- and bike-friendly environments — such as  bicycle racks, bike-share programs and protected walk-bike lanes enable people of all ages and incomes to get around. “When we can work with communities to implement these changes, we make bicycling and walking safer for everyone, and that makes communities stronger and more livable," says Danielle Arigoni, director of AARP Livable Communities.
 
About an AARP-related data point in the benchmarking report, she observes: "The percentage of people age 65 or older who regularly walk for exercise or to just get around is far greater today than it was for that age group in 2009. This is exactly the right trend — and a good affirmation that we’re on the right track.”
 

Find prior benchmarking reports at BikeLeague.org/Benchmarking-Report and BikingAndWalkingBenchmarks.org
Page published February 2019


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