The League of American Bicyclists, the premier grassroots advocacy organization encouraging better bicycling and protecting the rights of people who bike, has honored the WashU Danforth campus with a Gold-level Bicycle Friendly University award in recognition of the institution’s achievements in promoting and enabling safe, accessible bicycling on campus.
WashU was first designated a Bicycle Friendly University at a Bronze level in 2015. Within five years, the university was able to climb two levels, a testimony of the great strides accomplished on campus in favor of active transportation. WashU is the first in Missouri to have achieved this status, and one of a few in the Midwest who have received a higher level BFU designation (Gold or Platinum).
WashU’s award is the culmination of years of intentional efforts across departments to build a safer, more comfortable, and more convenient campus for all users. Some of the most significant achievements include the launch of the Active Commuter Hub, the addition of more than 2 miles of separated bike lanes on and around the Danforth campus, the upgrading of our bike repair stations, the adoption of a Bike Policy, the launch of a new bike registration program through Project 529, and the strengthening of all of our programs and events to support bikers and active commuters. We are grateful for the multiple campus units, students and student groups, and community partners who contributed to the collaborative work that led to these milestones.
“It is so energizing to have Washington University among our cohort of 212 Bicycle Friendly Universities across the country,” said Bill Nesper, executive director of the League of American Bicyclists. “The 2020 class of 38 Bicycle Friendly Universities, which includes WashU, has had to address a crisis unlike any we’ve seen in our lifetimes. Amidst the pandemic, we are grateful each of these institutions has acknowledged the benefits to the well-being and health of its students, staff, and faculty in being a Bicycle Friendly University. These colleges and universities are leading by building healthy environments where people can safely get around while improving the well-being of their community by enabling access to sustainable transportation options.”
As WashU continues to improve its campus accessibility for cyclists, it will have access to a variety of free tools, a library of resources, and technical assistance from the League to become even more welcoming to people who bike. When colleges and universities invest in the comfort and safety of people bicycling, great things happen: we decrease greenhouse gas emissions, we improve our air quality, we enhance our public and personal health, we create safer streets for everyone, we save money, we strengthen our communities, and we have fun!
“What’s clear is that bicycling is part of the solution many colleges and universities are using to better the campus life of their communities. The League is so proud of institutions like Washington University in St. Louis for continuing this important work of building a Bicycle Friendly America for everyone at such a critical time for the health of our population and our planet,” said the League’s Bicycle Friendly America Director, Amelia Neptune.