Between 2006 and 2012, people driving cars hit nearly 19,000 children who were walking or biking in Illinois, and 54 percent of those children were hit within one block of a school.
Most everyone would like to bicycle more because it’s a fun, healthy way to get around. But for many of us, biking in traffic on a typical street or bike lane is scary. We know from experiences outside of the Chicago region that communities can create bikeways that provide comfortable, low-stress spaces to bike for people of all ages.
The goal of the Family Friendly Bikeways campaign is to bring the benefits of low-stress bikeways to Chicago’s suburban communities.
Encouraging more people to take trips by bicycle can improve health, reduce air pollution, cut carbon emissions and help households and governments save money. Despite this knowledge, many people who would like to use a bike to get around just don’t feel safe and comfortable enough to do so.
Suburban areas face many barriers to building low-stress bikeways. Lack of available resources, disconnected street networks and confusing layers of government control over roads are just a few of the hurdles communities need to overcome in order to build the next generation bike infrastructure needed to make bicycling an attractive transportation option.
Low-stress bike networks, which we call Family Friendly Bikeways, have the power to encourage more people to use bikes as transportation in their suburban community. Family Friendly Bikeways include a wide range of different infrastructure options including:
For all of the above, you can safely get through intersections and across busy streets, while easily navigating to key destinations.
Sign up today to show your support for Family-Friendly Bikeways and to learn more about making it happen in your community.