Encourage Biking in Your Community

Community parks provide a place for people to gather together and get active, but for many people, getting to and from the park can be a challenge. The Safe Routes to Parks Activating Communities program aims to improve the safety and security of walking and biking to parks through technical assistance and grant funding. Safe Routes to Parks are approximately 10-minute walks or bike rides to parks that are accessible using various modes of transportation, conveniently located, safe from traffic and other danger, comfortable and pleasant places to walk or bike, and ending at well-maintained parks.

Encouraging people to get to your park via bicycle isn't that hard—you just need to provide safe routes and the right amenities.

Q: we'd like to encourage more activity in our community. What are some ways we can encourage people to bike to and from our parks?

A: Think about the needs and abilities of riders, and try to accommodate them. First, quality bike parking in a safe and secure area will encourage riders to come take part in park activities. But beyond that, consider adding a bike repair station.

Even experienced riders might find themselves stuck without the right tool, and they'll be glad to find you've provided the necessities. A self-service bike repair station should provide all the tools needed to perform basic bike repairs and maintenance—anything from changing a flat tire to adjusting derailleurs and brakes. A hanger gives riders a place to put their bike while they make adjustments.

Air is also important, allowing cyclists to keep their tire pressure at the right level, so consider adding an air pump to your repair station. An integrated pressure gauge will help more experienced riders fine-tune their tire pressure for an ideal ride.

Q: we want everyone to feel encouraged to walk or bike to our park. How can we help create a safe route to the park?

A: While incorporating amenities like racks and repair stations in your park will encourage riders, you also need to consider the path to and from the park. Are there bike paths that are easily accessible and well-maintained, or will riders have to deal with traffic?

Consider creating protected bike lanes on streets to and from your parks. You can add a steel barrier system to create a fully protected bike lane—especially important on busy roads. These systems are modular, making them easy to expand or reconfigure as a love of biking grows in your community.

Q: What else should we consider to encourage active transportation to and from the park?

A: Bike shelters at the park entrance or over your repair station are welcome to riders who might need a little protection from the elements. Consider using shelters near your park entrance to cover wayfinding signage, your repair stand, bike parking and more.

Are you looking for amenities that tie in to the look and feel of your community and park? Look for customizable bike racks and let your imagination run wild. Work with your manufacturer and you can create anything from a whimsical bike rack to an aesthetically pleasing piece of art for your park.