The Bay Area rates high among bike-friendly U.S. cities for commuters, according to a new report.
As part of National Bike Month, researchers at CoworkingCafe analyzed a series of factors such as infrastructure, traffic safety, weather, share of commuters who ride a bike to work, the number of co-working options with bike amenities and bike sharing services.
Among the report's findings:
- San Francisco placed 2nd among the most bike-friendly U.S. cities, while Oakland finished 5th, San Jose 12th and Sacramento, 17th. Davis earned the top spot.
- California dominated the list of most bike-friendly cities, securing eight spots in the top 20.
- San Francisco took sixth place for its 15 co-working spaces with bike amenities.
California’s commitment to bike infrastructure and pro-cycling policies — like the Complete Streets Act or the Three Feet for Safety Act — have paved the way for a thriving biking culture, and the weather is also as close to a cyclists’ paradise as it gets, according to the report.
Notably, Davis has earned the reputation of being the Bicycle Capital of America due to its exceptional bike-friendly environment and extensive infrastructure. Davis has 14 miles of bike lanes for every square mile in the city. The report found that the more bicycle lanes there are in a city, the safer green mobility is overall, and Davis provides the prime example with no registered bike accidents over the last 5-year period.
Underscoring the importance of bike lanes, accidents became more frequent in cities with less-developed infrastructure, with San Francisco, Long Beach, San Jose and Sacramento exhibiting incrementally higher accident rates. However, the report notes the weight of other factors influencing cyclist safety beyond the presence of bike lanes, including driver awareness, traffic regulations and overall road conditions.
A notable aspect that stood out for San Francisco was its favorable weather conditions, with mild temperatures. Additionally, the 3.3% share of bike commuters — translating into more than 16,000 cyclists — is further proof that the cityoffers not only an inviting climate for bike commuting, but also plenty of other incentives. And, with 3.9 miles of bike lanes per square mile, it’s second only to Davis. What’s more, many co-working operators also capitalize on the developed cycling culture with bike-related amenities in 15 locations throughout the city.
Likewise, the other Bay Area cities on the list also had their own unique strengths. For instance, Oakland did well when it came to road safety. While San Jose didn’t excel in any of the metrics, the city still managed to obtain consistently high scores across the board in the report.