Did You Know?

Decades of research shows that expanding roads doesn’t provide lasting congestion relief. More lanes means more traffic.

Additional walking and biking guidance during COVID-19

Earlier this spring when the COVID-19 pandemic began, the Active Transportation Alliance worked with Cook County Department of Public Health (CCDPH) to develop a shareable infographic offering advice on how to stay safe while walking and biking.

Now that our state has reached Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan, which allows for physically-distanced and masked gatherings of up to 100 people in outdoor spaces, many have asked if walking and biking in small groups is considered safe.

We consulted with subject matter experts from CCDPH for advice.

In general, if you go on a walk or bike ride by yourself or with anyone from within or outside of your household, always take the proper precautions. Public health guidelines still recommend keeping 6-feet of physical distance between you and others, staying home when you are sick, and wearing a mask in public — especially when physical distancing becomes difficult.

However, given an increased understanding of how the virus transmits, public health experts acknowledge that different activities pose varying levels of risk. While we are still learning more about the virus every day, walking and biking in small groups outside and quickly passing others on trails, bike lanes, or sidewalks are viewed as lower risk activities.

Be aware that any time you interact with someone from outside of your household, your risk of contracting COVID-19 increases. Ask questions and know what precautions your potential walking and biking partners have taken to stay safe from COVID.

For additional information, we recommend reading Bicycling Magazine’s How to Ride Safely Amid Coronavirus Concerns, which provides answers from health care professionals to frequently asked questions from cyclists.