Michael Andersen, Green Lane Project staff writer
Over the last week, we’ve been sharing tidbits from our big new report on the ways protected bike lanes are supporting economic growth in the cities where they’re being built.
The best use of this report, though, may not be in your reading about it on our blog. It might be from your dropping a hard copy on the desk of someone important.
Here’s how: Send an email to my boss, Green Lane Project Director Martha Roskowski, at [email protected] Include your mailing address, a sentence or two on how you’d like to use the reports in your work, and how many copies (up to five) you’d like.
No charge — if we think you’ve got a good way to use them, this one’s on us.
What’s in the report
A collaboration between PeopleForBikes’ Green Lane Project and the Alliance for Biking and Walking, we’ve been posting parts of it here on the site over the last few months. Here’s a directory of links to the stories we’ve shared.
The report, which you can also download as a free PDF, draws on five of the Green Lane Project’s focus cities to explain four ways that better bike lanes help urban economies:
- They increase real estate values by helping more people reach a property without jamming streets. Revenue-driven office building owners in San Francisco and Washington DC are eagerly pushing for protected lanes; in Portland, a developer is investing $250 million in a 657-apartment complex next to a protected bike lane that’ll offer four times as much residential bike parking as car parking.
- They improve the recruitment and retention of valuable employees and employers. When a Chicago entrepreneur was weighing his company’s possible move to Boston, his first step was looking into the city’s protected bike lane network. A big Austin tech employer says its bike-friendly downtown location is one of its key recruiting assets. A Portland marketing startup is negotiating bike access into every office lease because 20 of its 30 employees prefer to bike to work regularly.
- They improve workers’ health and productivity by making exercise part of daily life. An American Bar Association manager in Chicago rides because it makes her better at her job. A Chicago museum photographer uses protected bike lanes to recruit co-workers to ride. A Portland medical provider backed a protected bike lane outside its headquarters as part of its cost-cutting campaign.
- They boost traffic at retail districts by bringing in shoppers who spend just as much but don’t need parking spaces. An Austin theater and a Chicago bar say protected lanes outside their doors increase visibility. A Portland mini-grocer is pushing for protected lanes on a busy street so it can better connect to its neighborhood. A San Francisco bookstore asked to replace auto parking with bike parking in order to boost sales.
Throughout the report, and many of the blog posts here, we’ve included statistics and infographics showing that these aren’t isolated anomalies. The fact that high-quality bike lanes help the economy is part of the new economic reality for American cities.
It’s always nice to be working on the side of reality. All you have to do is talk about it.
The Green Lane Project is a PeopleForBikes program that helps U.S. cities build better bike lanes to create low-stress streets. You can follow us on Twitter or Facebook or sign up for our weekly news digest about protected bike lanes. Story tip? Write [email protected]