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  #1  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2013, 2:34 AM
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US Cities Ranked by Most Bike Commuters

Source: the League of American Bicyclists' new survey, "Where We Ride: Analysis of Bicycling in
American Cities."

City - Population - Bike commuters - Percentage of all commuters

New York - 8,336,697 - 36,496 - 1%
Chicago - 2,714,844 - 19,147 - 1.6%
Portland - 603,650 - 18,912 - 6.1%
Los Angeles - 3,857,786 - 17,223 - 1%
San Francisco - 825,863 - 16,864 - 3.8%
Seattle - 634,541 - 15,007 - 4.1%
Philadelphia - 1,547,607 - 13,726 - 2.3%
Washington DC - 632,323 - 13,493 - 4.1%
Minneapolis - 392,871 - 9,688 - 4.5%
Denver - 634,265 - 9,416 - 2.9%
Madison - 240,315 - 8,375 - 6.2%
Austin - 842,595 - 6,999 - 1.6%
San Diego - 1,338,354 - 6,929 - 1.1%
Boulder - 101,812 - 6,560 - 12.1%
Boston - 637,516 - 6,536 - 2%
Ft. Collins - 148,634 - 6,190 - 7.9%
Tucson - 524,278 - 6,189 - 2.8%
Eugene - 157,984 - 6,121 - 8.7%
Davis - 66,009 - 5,830 - 19.1%
Cambridge - 106,456 - 5,067 - 8.5%
Sacramento - 475,524 - 5,016 - 2.6%
Oakland - 400,740 - 5,012 - 2.7%
Phoenix - 1,488,759 - 4,784 - 0.7%
Berkeley - 115,417 - 4,290 - 7.6%
Tempe - 166,862 - 3,966 - 4.5%
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  #2  
Old Posted Nov 23, 2013, 9:38 PM
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Minneapolis and Madison prove that, yes, even New York and San Francisco can lag behind the (Upper) Midwest.
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  #3  
Old Posted Nov 23, 2013, 9:57 PM
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Well maybe, but in the case of NYC I'd say the most relevant measure is the percentage of bike commuters who are within reasonable biking range of their work place. The percentages go by city proper, and NYC has a land area over 5x that of Minneapolis after all.
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Old Posted Nov 23, 2013, 10:03 PM
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Not surprising the highest percentages are college towns.
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Old Posted Nov 23, 2013, 10:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fflint View Post
Source: the League of American Bicyclists' new survey, "Where We Ride: Analysis of Bicycling in
American Cities."

City - Population - Bike commuters - Percentage of all commuters

New York - 8,336,697 - 36,496 - 1%
Chicago - 2,714,844 - 19,147 - 1.6%
Portland - 603,650 - 18,912 - 6.1%
Los Angeles - 3,857,786 - 17,223 - 1%
San Francisco - 825,863 - 16,864 - 3.8%
Seattle - 634,541 - 15,007 - 4.1%
Philadelphia - 1,547,607 - 13,726 - 2.3%
Washington DC - 632,323 - 13,493 - 4.1%
Minneapolis - 392,871 - 9,688 - 4.5%
Denver - 634,265 - 9,416 - 2.9%
Madison - 240,315 - 8,375 - 6.2%
Austin - 842,595 - 6,999 - 1.6%
San Diego - 1,338,354 - 6,929 - 1.1%
Boulder - 101,812 - 6,560 - 12.1%
Boston - 637,516 - 6,536 - 2%
Ft. Collins - 148,634 - 6,190 - 7.9%
Tucson - 524,278 - 6,189 - 2.8%
Eugene - 157,984 - 6,121 - 8.7%
Davis - 66,009 - 5,830 - 19.1%
Cambridge - 106,456 - 5,067 - 8.5%
Sacramento - 475,524 - 5,016 - 2.6%
Oakland - 400,740 - 5,012 - 2.7%
Phoenix - 1,488,759 - 4,784 - 0.7%
Berkeley - 115,417 - 4,290 - 7.6%
Tempe - 166,862 - 3,966 - 4.5%
Not surprising to see Philly high up on this list especially considering they're removing vehicular lanes and replacing them with bike lanes.

I wonder when Pittsburgh will start to climb the rankings. They just recently opened the Great Allegheny Passage trail to DC, and the Burgh also has its new bike boulevard, in the Polish Hill community, with more such infrastructure to come.
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Old Posted Nov 24, 2013, 9:25 PM
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Same list, reordered by percentage rather than raw numbers:

Davis - 66,009 - 5,830 - 19.1%
Boulder - 101,812 - 6,560 - 12.1%
Eugene - 157,984 - 6,121 - 8.7%
Cambridge - 106,456 - 5,067 - 8.5%
Ft. Collins - 148,634 - 6,190 - 7.9%
Berkeley - 115,417 - 4,290 - 7.6%
Madison - 240,315 - 8,375 - 6.2%
Portland - 603,650 - 18,912 - 6.1%
Tempe - 166,862 - 3,966 - 4.5%
Minneapolis - 392,871 - 9,688 - 4.5%
Seattle - 634,541 - 15,007 - 4.1%
Washington DC - 632,323 - 13,493 - 4.1%
San Francisco - 825,863 - 16,864 - 3.8%
Denver - 634,265 - 9,416 - 2.9%
Tucson - 524,278 - 6,189 - 2.8%
Oakland - 400,740 - 5,012 - 2.7%
Sacramento - 475,524 - 5,016 - 2.6%
Philadelphia - 1,547,607 - 13,726 - 2.3%
Boston - 637,516 - 6,536 - 2%
Chicago - 2,714,844 - 19,147 - 1.6%
Austin - 842,595 - 6,999 - 1.6%
San Diego - 1,338,354 - 6,929 - 1.1%
New York - 8,336,697 - 36,496 - 1%
Los Angeles - 3,857,786 - 17,223 - 1%
Phoenix - 1,488,759 - 4,784 - 0.7%
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  #7  
Old Posted Nov 24, 2013, 11:07 PM
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Those college towns at the top of the percentage list bode well for the future. They are full of young people who are, unlike prior post-war American generations, developing a taste for fast, convenient, cheap commutes by bicycle. And I'd wager they're also bicycling on non-commute trips--every cyclist I know does that.

Of course, it's entirely reasonable to expect that many of these college kids will give up bicycling as they move, age and settle down--but it's also reasonable to expect many of today's college bikers to be tomorrow's bike commuters when and where they settle down.
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Last edited by fflint; Nov 24, 2013 at 11:30 PM.
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  #8  
Old Posted Nov 24, 2013, 11:07 PM
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There is a lot more there than what ya'll posted though, and the way Cirrus reposted the list leaves a lot of cities out (in terms of highest percentage of commuters, in any number of filters). It's a very detailed, excellent report. I enjoyed reading through the whole report.
For example, Palo Alto is 3rd (9.5% of commuters) on TOP 25 CITIES WITH HIGHEST SHARE OF BICYCLISTS.
Another example, New Orleans is ranked tenth (2.4%) out of top 70 cities with highest share of bike commuters.
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  #9  
Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 2:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nouvellecosse View Post
Well maybe, but in the case of NYC I'd say the most relevant measure is the percentage of bike commuters who are within reasonable biking range of their work place. The percentages go by city proper, and NYC has a land area over 5x that of Minneapolis after all.
I wonder how many of those biking in NYC are bike messengers and food delivery guys.
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Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 4:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fflint View Post
Those college towns at the top of the percentage list bode well for the future. They are full of young people who are, unlike prior post-war American generations, developing a taste for fast, convenient, cheap commutes by bicycle. And I'd wager they're also bicycling on non-commute trips--every cyclist I know does that.

Of course, it's entirely reasonable to expect that many of these college kids will give up bicycling as they move, age and settle down--but it's also reasonable to expect many of today's college bikers to be tomorrow's bike commuters when and where they settle down.
I disagree in that I don't think these kids will increase the bike commute by much.

College kids have always biked to school. My father did in Charlottesville back in the 60s. College kids bike to class bc they're dirt poor, living off of loans. Colleges restrict parking. There is almost no parking close to classroom buildings and what parking that is available is really expensive for a no income/low income student. They'd rather spend that money on keg beer.

Once they enter the real world the bike gets shelved in favor of the new shiny car.
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Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 5:02 PM
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Of course most will. But the biking rate is extremely likely to keep increasing, and this is a factor. The numbers have been increasing at colleges too btw.
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Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 5:15 PM
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Of course most will. But the biking rate is extremely likely to keep increasing, and this is a factor. The numbers have been increasing at colleges too btw.
I think the bike rates will increase (slowly) but because of a different cause. Increase of job density in CBDs and increased pop density in urban neighborhoods.
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Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 7:28 PM
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The culture is also changing.

This is pretty obvious looking at how the trend has gone already. Bike commute shares have risen substantially in many/most cities, regardless of density trends.
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Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 7:34 PM
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i'm surprised at NYC's percentage. I would have expect a much more thorough bicycling culture there than LA, but the two cities share the same percentage. maybe pedestrians just have a bunch of other options?
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Old Posted Dec 24, 2013, 8:20 PM
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^ Actually, I'm not surprised by NYC's low percentage either. I think that is a testament to how good the city's subway system is in getting people around.

I think cities like Chicago, SF, and Washington DC may benefit the most from a well designed bike system. They all have mass transit systems but not as extensive as New York's, with bikes at least playing a role in patching up the holes.
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Old Posted Dec 25, 2013, 7:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fflint View Post
Those college towns at the top of the percentage list bode well for the future. They are full of young people who are, unlike prior post-war American generations, developing a taste for fast, convenient, cheap commutes by bicycle. And I'd wager they're also bicycling on non-commute trips--every cyclist I know does that.

Of course, it's entirely reasonable to expect that many of these college kids will give up bicycling as they move, age and settle down--but it's also reasonable to expect many of today's college bikers to be tomorrow's bike commuters when and where they settle down.
I'm a junior at the University of Texas at Austin and I started biking my sophomore year. Not only do I ride my bicycle to get around campus.. I've gradually started to use it to go places all around Central Austin.

I will always be a bicyclist for as long as my legs allow me to pedal. I will do whatever it takes to live in a place/find a job where I can bike to places.
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Old Posted Dec 27, 2013, 5:24 PM
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Originally Posted by inSaeculaSaeculorum View Post
i'm surprised at NYC's percentage. I would have expect a much more thorough bicycling culture there than LA, but the two cities share the same percentage. maybe pedestrians just have a bunch of other options?
Better (more consistent) biking weather in LA, or maybe the beach communities skew the data for the overall city?
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Old Posted Dec 28, 2013, 1:52 AM
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I disagree in that I don't think these kids will increase the bike commute by much.
Disagreed. Given past behavior is a good predictor of future behavior, and given the dramatic and rapid increase in bike commuting among young people today, I think Gen Y will continue to commute to work by bike in higher proportions than immediately preceding generations. And even if they don't--which is debatable--going forward in a world where energy prices only increase, it seems likely new cohorts of young people will take advantage of all the new bicycle infrastructure being constructed in our cities. Of course, nobody can predict the future.

Quote:
College kids have always biked to school.
It is not obviously true bike commute percentages to and from college have remained the same over the last few decades--I doubt my own Gen X biked to college in the same proportions as Gen Y does today--but this is all beside the point. We're discussing data covering commutes between home and work--not trips to school, or the store or the movies or wherever else. The data in this thread show bike commutes to work have increased dramatically and rapidly in cities across the nation--and especially so in today's college towns.

Again, nobody can predict future behavior, but I see no good reason to look at the dramatic increase in bike commutes among today's young people and then conclude an opposite conclusion for the future--that somehow these same people shall entirely abandon bicycling in the future. Most will commute to work by means other than bike, as they do now, but there's no good reason to expect zero increase in bike commuting over time given how so many are already doing so--at historic rates.

Quote:
Once they enter the real world the bike gets shelved in favor of the new shiny car.
Commute-to-work data fits entirely within any reasonble "real world" context.
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Old Posted Dec 28, 2013, 1:52 PM
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Once they enter the real world the bike gets shelved in favor of the new shiny car.
Not with the amount of debt that many students graduate with today. If college grads can take transit and bike to/from work and other destinations, they can save $5,000 - $7,000 per year that could be put towards paying off student loans.
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Old Posted Jul 29, 2015, 3:26 AM
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Originally Posted by inSaeculaSaeculorum View Post
i'm surprised at NYC's percentage. I would have expect a much more thorough bicycling culture there than LA, but the two cities share the same percentage. maybe pedestrians just have a bunch of other options?
What I find amazing is how NYC is so large it can be tied for the second lowest percentage yet still has almost double the riders of the next highest city.
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