PeopleForBikes' Biggest Wins of 2023
By: PeopleForBikes Staff
Our team was hard at work in 2023 improving opportunities for bicycling and the bike industry nationwide.
PeopleForBikes was hard at work in 2023 improving opportunities for bicycling and the bike industry nationwide. We launched a first-of-its kind program tracking thousands of bike projects in all 50 states, fought for millions of dollars in state and local funding to make e-bikes more affordable and accessible for more Americans, funded projects improving access to bicycling in communities across the U.S., and so much more.
These amazing wins for biking would not have been possible without the support of people like you. You can help power more wins like these and all of our work in 2024 and beyond by donating to PeopleForBikes. Your donation is an investment in better biking for everyone.
The Great Bike Infrastructure Project
Earlier this year, we launched a new, ambitious program aimed at transforming communities nationwide by making biking safer and more accessible for everyone. At the heart of the Great Bike Infrastructure Project is a first-of-its-kind national database and interactive map featuring more than 1,300 planned bicycle infrastructure projects in all 50 states. The database includes projects that benefit every rider: bike parks, protected bike lanes, multi-use paths, natural surface trails, and more. New projects are added to the dynamic list as we hear about them and project statuses are updated in near-real time. By connecting state and local advocacy organizations, elected officials, and the everyday riders and businesses who will benefit from this work, we can get these projects across the finish line faster than ever before.
To help these projects get done, we also published “Legislative Strategies for Safe and Connected Bike Infrastructure,” a guide designed to assist policymakers and advocates in enacting winning strategies for bikes in their communities with a collection of diverse, real-world examples. Our top four recommendations include:
- Provide sufficient state and local funding for bike projects
- Mandate Complete Streets
- Include bicycling and bike projects in climate strategies
- Create safer places to ride through lower speed limits, restricting right turns on red at intersections, and adopting modern design standards
Learn more about the Great Bike Infrastructure Project at infrastructure.peopleforbikes.org.
$2 Billion in Bike Infrastructure Funding
This November, our VoteForBikes campaign tracked 17 bike-related measures on state and local ballots across the country and voters approved nearly $2 billion in funding to support off-road and paved bicycle infrastructure projects.
Eighty percent of the approved funding, totaling $1.56 billion, will go towards projects largely focused on the acquisition, management, and maintenance of open space lands that will facilitate an exponential increase in recreational bike access. The remaining $391 million of approved funding will go towards paved bicycle infrastructure projects, including the construction of bike lanes, safe crossings, and safe intersections.
Improved Research and Data for the Bike Industry
Over the last two years, PeopleForBikes made significant investments to expand our research and statistics program, improving the offerings available to our Coalition members across our Business Intelligence Hub and Member Center. This program expansion created a more comprehensive view of bicycling in the U.S., providing our members more accurate and consistent data to plan for the future.
Coalition members can access market intelligence including an archive of monthly Circana Sell-Through reports, quarterly Global Risk and Opportunity Forecast Reports from S&P Global, detailed participation studies from the Physical Activity Council, and a myriad of consumer insights studies via the PeopleForBikes Member Center. Also in the Member Center is the Business Intelligence Hub, the industry's go-to resource for timely market data including ridership, sales, and consumer insights information.
Interested in joining the 325 other bike businesses powering the PeopleForBikes Coalition? Reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gathered and Educated the Bike Industry
2023 was another successful year for our Bicycle Leadership Series events aimed at gathering and educating members of the bike industry. Our sold-out Bicycle Leadership Conference in Dana Point, California, hosted more than 270 bike industry executives from 141 brands. We evolved our SHIFT conference in Bentonville, Arkansas to focus on electric bicycles and top speakers included U.S. CPSC Commissioner Mary T. Boyle and Congressman Earl Blumenauer. We also hosted 16 industry education webinars totaling close to 1,600 registered attendees. Stay tuned for our 2024 webinar series, coming soon!
All Things eMTBs
Our industry eMTB Working Group was hard at work this year, helping create model legislation to address eMTB access on natural surface trails. The group also assessed interest in additional states expanding eMTB access in 2024 and beyond.
PeopleForBikes’ e-bike experts released a toolkit to help land management agencies, city councils, policymakers, and bike advocates to easily propose, design, and implement eMTB pilot projects. The projects are intended to help evaluate perceptions and benefits of the use of Class 1 eMTBs on natural surface trails.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Bike Industry
In collaboration with the Avarna Group, we hosted quarterly sessions for the first industrywide BIPOC affinity group. Centering bike industry members who may experience marginalization based on systemic racism, including Black, Indigenous, Latine, Asian, and other people of color (BIPOC), the group discussed topics including belonging, inclusion, and barriers to accessing biking and jobs in our industry.
Our team also researched opportunities for mentoring and career development education within our industry workforce and worked with industry experts on fielding a survey covering current DEI practices, employee experience of inclusion (or lack thereof), and employee demographics at bike businesses.
Electric Bicycle Battery Recycling
Millions of electric bikes are being ridden on roads and trails across the U.S., helping Americans replace car trips, reduce their personal carbon footprint, and access the countless benefits and joys of the great outdoors. Powering those bikes are millions of lithium ion batteries that will need to be properly managed at their end of life.
With that in mind, PeopleForBikes helped the bike industry come together as the first transportation industry to establish a battery recycling program to reduce negative impacts on our planet by removing e-bike batteries from our waste streams. This new program, powered by Call2Recycle, already recycled tens of thousands of pounds of batteries this year alone.
Thousands of trained recycling drop-off centers are ready to collect your old e-bike battery once it reaches its end of life. Find a drop-off location near you.
Great Places to Bike
Our City Ratings program, which scores cities on the quality and connectedness of their bike networks, rated more cities than ever in 2023, including nearly 1,500 U.S. cities and 249 international cities across 18 countries.
By benchmarking cities’ scores, we can track their progress over time and pinpoint specific strategies to improve bicycling locally. We encourage cities to utilize our SPRINT framework to improve their City Ratings scores:
- S - Lower motor vehicle SPEEDS
- P - Construct more PROTECTED bike lanes
- R - Reallocate ROAD space (to bikes)
- I - Treat dangerous INTERSECTIONS
- N - Create connected bike NETWORKS
- T - Improve TRUSTED data
Supported Better Access to Bicycling
Through our work with the Better Bike Share Partnership, we granted $100,000 to six organizations to improve access to bike share for low-income populations and communities of color.
Our 2023 Industry Community Grants, funded by the bike industry, supported 13 projects totaling $100,000 in funding. The grants will help fund projects that align with our focus on building infrastructure that makes communities great places to ride a bike. The projects include several pump tracks, efforts to build safe routes to schools, demonstration projects to promote the importance of protected bike lanes, innovative solutions to combat bike theft in college towns, and mountain bike parks in flat urban areas.
E-Bike Rider Safety Education
As millions of people discover the joys and benefits of riding an electric bicycle, PeopleForBikes, with the help of our partners at the League of American Bicyclists and Bicycle Colorado, launched E-Bike Smart, a rider safety education course that shares tips for safely and responsibly owning and riding an electric bicycle. The fun, interactive curriculum helps ensure that every rider, regardless of age or ability, has the right knowledge to safely enjoy their next e-bike ride.