Bicycle advocacy is on the move in Ohio.
Last month, the League released its 2012 Bicycle Friendly States Ranking and the Buckeye State came in at #37. But, while they still face challenge in funding, infrastructure, legislative support, and public opinion, bike advocates are making headway — and improving Ohio for bicyclists.
Ohio has a long history of cycling, but it is only recently that bicycles have been widely seen as a means of transportation as well as recreation. Bicycle-friendly legislation and construction are laying the foundation for better bicycle safety, but laws and lanes aren’t likely to boost cycling without the support of an understanding public. This is where advocacy can make all the difference. Luckily, strong advocates in Ohio are providing support and encouragement for longtime cyclists and new riders alike, while easing the concerns of motorists through awareness campaigns.
In a state where municipal law is so important, local advocacy has an advantage over statewide efforts. Cleveland has passed a complete streets ordinance and Cincinnati was designated a Bronze Bicycle Friendly Community both thanks to dedicated local advocates.