From Memphis to Vancouver, Bikes Mean Business

Cities and companies are catching on to the economic impact of expanding bicycling amenities, writes Carolyn Szczepanski, who shares the growing body of research and anecdotal examples of the attraction between bikes and businesses.
May 12, 2013, 9am PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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"Increasingly leaders in the public and private sector are realizing that being bike-friendly makes good business sense, boosting the bottom line and promoting community-wide economic development," says Szczepanski. "Bicycling in the United States is a $6 billion national industry and one study estimates that the spillover effects of recreational bicycling alone could be as large as $133 billion. But that’s just the beginning, barely scratching the surface of the economic impact of transportation bicycling in communities across North America."

"Increasingly, businesses across the country are trying to tap into the spending power of cyclists. In 2008, the League of American Bicyclists launched its Bicycle Friendly Business (BFB) program, setting clear criteria for how employers can encourage cycling among their staff and customers and recognizing companies at the Bronze, Silver, Gold or Platinum level for their achievements. From small coffee shops to major corporations, a staggering 480 businesses in the US have earned a BFB designation. Hundreds more have applied."

"Even city officials and transportation planners are recognizing that the small cost of bike infrastructure provides a big payoff for taxpayers and business owners," she explains.

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Published on Monday, April 29, 2013 in Momentum Magazine
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