More bike commuters = economic boom

Here’s an inspiring “roundup” article about a number of cities (with a focus on Detroit) that are experiencing an economic uptick directly linked to their development of bike infrastructure and subsequent increase in bicycle commuters:

From custom frame builders in Detroit and messenger bag makers in Philadelphia to a bike-share startup in Tampa, the new bike-based economy is flourishing in U.S. cities. This startup ecosystem includes tour companies, pedicabs, mountain bike parks, artisan rack welders, bike rental outfits, bike-friendly bars and app developers.

Alison Dewey, program manager for the League of American Bicyclists’ Bicycle-Friendly Business program says these businesses are feeding off the rise in bike commuting and the fact that young people are now driving less. A recent released report from U.S. PIRG shows that car usage is declining after climbing for six decades straight. Meanwhile, bike commuting grew 39 percent on average from 2000-2010.

Read the full article by visiting the Detroit Free Press page.

Personally, I love the term “bike-based economy”…it gives me hope that our chosen form of transportation can be part of the stimulus cities need to recover financially. Has YOUR city seen an increase in bike-related businesses as a result of developing bike-friendly infrastructure? We’d love to hear about it.

About the author

Bicycle commuter since 1989, bicycle enthusiast for 30+ years. I am a Bookmobile/Books By Mail librarian at a large library system and the proud father of two wonderful boys.