The League of American Bicyclists is serious about bike safety as well as making bicycling a viable and convenient mode of transportation for everyone. In fact, the League has been protecting the right to safe and enjoyable bicycling since 1880, when the organization started as the League of American Wheelmen.
To underscore its mission, the League reviews communities, states, businesses and college campuses for qualities considered essential to building a bicycle-friendly America. The bottom line is to make bicycling "a real transportation and recreation option for all people.”
The Bicycle Friendly University℠ (BFU℠) program recognizes colleges and universities that promote and provide more bikeable campus environments for students, staff, and visitors.
Toward this end, campuses are evaluated in five areas: engineering, encouragement, education, enforcement and evaluation/planning—otherwise known as the Five E’s.
Colleges request evaluation by submitting applications for consideration by the League. In addition, input is sought from volunteer local reviewers, who are consulted to share “on the ground” perspectives on the biking landscape.
After the most recent round of reviews, the League announced the designation of 17 new Bicycle Friendly Universities, growing the list to 75 colleges in 3 states and Washington, D.C. New additions include Alfred University (Bronze Award), Bowdoin College (Silver), Georgetown University (Bronze), Oberlin College (Bronze), University of Montana (Gold), University of San Diego (Bronze), UT Austin (Bronze), and the University of Virginia (Bronze).
At the top of the list, only two universities have earned Platinum-level BFU: Stanford University and the University of California-Davis. And anyone who has visited either campus during bicycle rush hour (the minutes between classes) can attest that bikes represent a critical mode of transportation at both schools.
"I'm proud to be part of the campus-wide team that has earned this recognition through many years of doing our best to promote bicycle commuting," said David Takemoto-Weerts, UC Davis's Bicycle Program Coordinator. "With a bike mode share approaching 50 percent, upwards of 20,000 bikes on campus during peak use days, and ever-improving infrastructure and safety programs, we hope to continue to serve as a model for other colleges and universities working to increase the beneficial use of bikes for daily transportation."
A new round of evaluations will begin later this year. For now, colleges and universities earning Silver status and above include:
- Stanford University (Platinum)
- UC Davis (Platinum)
- Portland State University (Gold)
- UC Santa Barbara (Gold)
- University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (Gold)
- University of Montana (Gold)
- Boise State University (Silver)
- Bowdoin College (Silver)
- Cal State Long Beach (Silver)
- Colorado State University (Silver)
- Georgia Tech (Silver)
- Harvard University (Silver)
- Lincoln Memorial University (Silver)
- Northern Arizona University (Silver)
- Oregon State University (Silver)
- University of Arizona (Silver)
- UC Irvine (Silver)
- UC Berkeley (Silver)
- University of La Verne (Silver)
- University of Louisville (Silver)
- University of Maryland (Silver)
- University of Nebraska (Silver)
- University of Oregon (Silver)
- University of Utah (Silver)
- University of Washington (Silver)
- University of Wisconsin-Madison (Silver)
- Utah State University (Silver)
- Virginia Commonwealth University (Silver)
For the complete list of bicycle-friendly colleges and universities, visit the League of American Bicyclists website, where you will also find lists of bicycle-friendly states, communities and businesses as well as instructions on how to become a local reviewer for the League.