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Georgia still in the middle of the pack as bicycle-friendly state ranking 24th

By Maria Saporta

After make significant progress as a “Bicycle Friendly State” last year, Georgia slipped a notch according to the latest ranking by the League of American Bicyclists.

The ranking, which was released on Wednesday, showed that Georgia went from being the 23rd friendliest state for bicycles to the 24th among the 50 states between 2012 and 2013. The year before, Georgia had jumped from 40th to 23rd.

The area where Georgia continues to rank the weakest is in “evaluation and planning” — scoring in the lowest percentile in that category. Georgia also is weak in “infrastructure and funding” — scoring in the next lowest category.

Georgia also does not excel in any category — only scoring in the middle range in the areas of “education & encouragement,” “legislation & enforcement,” and “policies & programs.”

The 2013 Bicycle Friendly State ranking shows that Georgia does have a long way to go before it is in the company of the Top 10 Bicycle Friendly states.

The ranking, which was released on the first day of National Bike Month,  showed that the State of Washington continues to rank No. 1 for the sixth year in a row.

The other states rounding out the Top 10 are: Colorado (2); Oregon (3); Minnesota (4); Delaware (5); Massachusetts (6); New Jersey (7); Wisconsin (8); Illinois (9) and Arizona (10).

“We are encouraged to see significant progress in top states like Washington, Delaware, Colorado and Oregon,” said Andy Clarke, president of the League of American Bicyclists. “But as the scores clearly highlight, there’s much work to be done in critical areas like infrastructure and planning in every state.”

To get a state-by-state analysis on an interactive map, please click here. 

Although Washington remains No. 1, Colorado is nipping at its heels.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper says he plans to be No. 1 very soon, according to the League of American Bicyclists.

“An important part of making Colorado the healthiest state is encouraging people to be more active in their everyday routines,” Hickenlooper said. “We’re proud that our bicycle-friendly policies have skyrocketed Colorado’s rank up 20 places in just five years, and we are committed to being No. 1 in the near future.”

Maria Saporta

Maria Saporta, Editor, is a longtime Atlanta business, civic and urban affairs journalist with a deep knowledge of our city, our region and state.  Since 2008, she has written a weekly column and news stories for the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Prior to that, she spent 27 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, becoming its business columnist in 1991. Maria received her Master’s degree in urban studies from Georgia State and her Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. Maria was born in Atlanta to European parents and has two young adult children.


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