These cities offer the most robust bike sharing programs in the country, copious miles of bikeways and have plenty of urban and mountain biking trails. If you’re into cycling or just getting started then you’ll want to read this list as these cities are leading the charge in creating healthier and cleaner cities through biking.
To develop this list, the team here at HousingList performed a lot of research into climate, population, infrastructure, dedicated bike-lanes/paths, bikability ratings from site’s like Walkscore, and input & Comments from users across various city forums, bicyclist sites and more. We have a high confidence that if you are a biker, and looking to move to a new, bike-friendly city, you will be pleased with any of the top 6 locations below. Some locations with a high bike-score didn’t make the cut of the top 6 due to difficulty of terrain, weather or other issues that may impact bicyclists of all-levels.
Boulder is host to over 300 miles of dedicated bikeways including on-street bike lanes, contra-flow bike lanes, designated bike routes, paved shoulders, multi-use paths and soft-surface paths. Boulder’s bike sharing program, the Boulder B-cycle, is available 24hrs and simply requires a credit card swipe then off you go.
- This city’s bike score rated an 86.
- This city has over 97,000 residents.
- Boulder boasts an average of 245 sunny days a year.
- Comfort Index: 73
- Boulder was awarded a Platinum award in bike friendliness from BikeLeague.org
Nicknamed “Bike City” Portland has over 315 miles of bikeways (affectionately dubbed bike boulevards) and the nation’s highest percentage of bike commuters at 7%. Biketown, the bike share program in Portland provides 1000 smart bikes to the cities commuters as well. If that wasn’t enough, Portland has all sorts of events centered around biking, including Bike and Beer events and the World Naked Bike Ride. Yea, you read that correctly. Portland is considered one of the most bike-friendly cities on the West Coast. If you are a bicycle enthusiast, and love the Pacific Northwest, you can’t beat Portland.
- Portland’s bike score rated a 72!
- Portland boasts an average of 144 sunny days a year, with a high of only around 80 degrees and a low of 35. Impressive!
- The Comfort Index for Portland is a 79
- Portland was awarded a Platinim award in bike friendliness from BikeLeague.org
New York City, New York
Many people think of the subway as New York City’s main mode of transportation, but the city is actually extremely bike-friendly. The Big Apple boasts over 1000 miles of bikeways and the cities rideshare program “Citi Bike” provides residents over 6,000 bikes at 330 stations. Cycling is booming in New York City and has quadrupled since 2005. This is in large part thanks the cities continued efforts to add more bike lanes and expand the bike share program to over 10,000 bikes.
- New York City has a bikescore of 65.
- New York City gets an average of 244 sunny days per year.
- The comfort index for New York City is rated at 60 by Sperling’s.
- New York was rated a Silver award in bike friendliness from BikeLeague.org
Washington DC boasts an extremely friendly topography to bicyclists. Capital Bikeshare, DC’s bike sharing program, has over 3500 bikes available for rental at 300 stations across the DC, Arlington, Alexandria, and Fairfax, VA. A survey found that about 75 percent of the area’s bicyclists used bikes to commute to and from work on a daily basis. In addition, D.C.’s most popular festivals and events, like the famous National Cherry Blossom Festival, are easily accessible by bike. While not the friendliest on this list as far as bike lanes go at a little over 100 miles, the city is making efforts to add more.
- Washington DC’s Bike Score is a 69.
- D.C. boasts 203 sunny days per-year. Plenty of time to get out and enjoy the miles of bike-paths throughout the city.
- The comfort index is rated as a 54.
- DC boasts a number of bike-friendly businesses, and is rated as a #51 state-rank by BikeLeague.
Minneapolis has 129 miles of on-street bikeways and 97 miles of off-street bike trails. Nice Ride Minnesota provides the city with 1550 shared bicycles at 170 stations in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Residents love biking along the banks of the Mississippi River, or enjoying the shoreline of one of the area’s many lakes. Those without a bike of their own can use one of the city’s many bike-sharing kiosks to rent a bike for the day.
- Minneapolis’ bike-score is a whopping 81!
- Even though residents have to trudge through snow on occasion, Minneapolis still receives an average of 198 sunny days per-year. Impressive!
- The comfort index for Minneapolis rates a comfortable 54.
- Minneapolis received a gold rating in bike friendliness from BikeLeague.org
Tucson is consistently ranks as one of the top cycling cities in the country. While it currently has no bike sharing program, it does have one in the works and is expected to launch in 2017. The city does have the Loop though. The Loop is a 100+ mile car free trail that connects parks shopping and communities throughout the Tucson metro.
- Tucson’s Bike Score is 68
- Tucson receives an impressive average of 286 sunny days per-year, with 0 snowfall. However, resident’s do have to worry about the heat with an average July temperature of around 100 degrees.
- The comfort index for Tucson is a comfortable 54.
- Tucson received a gold rating in bike friendliness from BikeLeague.org