In Detroit, where biking continues to gain popularity as both a commuter and leisure activity, bike lanes and other rider protections are of the utmost importance. Known fondly as the Motor City for over half-a-century, Detroit’s transformation into a Motorless, Bike-focused City has been nothing short of remarkable. The bike lane totals in Detroit have grown from just 13 miles in 2007 to over 240 miles today, with multiple projects promising the construction of new bike lanes in the near future.
Beyond bike lanes, Detroit has seen an impressive improvement in its Places for Bikes ranking, nearly doubling its 1.6 overall score in 2019 to a 3.0 in 2020. The rating combines ridership, safety, network, reach, and acceleration to determine a city’s score; Detroit has improved in nearly every category each of the last 3 years.
MoGo has contributed to biking’s popularity since 2017, when it launched with 43 stations and 430 bikes in 10 neighborhoods in greater Downtown Detroit. In 2020, MoGo’s third year of operation, it nearly doubled its station footprint, while seeing average trip distance and duration among riders rise 70% year-over-year.
Though the construction of bike lanes in new neighborhoods across Metro Detroit spurs economic growth, encourages healthy habits, and strengthens the presence of alternative mobility options, rider safety needs to become a greater priority.
Imagine if more money was directed towards bike lanes and bike safety? As the author writes, “[We are] focusing on enabling human life on another planet when we struggle to make life great here on Earth.” Bike lanes, and safer bike lanes in particular, are a great way to improve our quality of life.