Mayors spend a lot of time thinking about roads, bridges, mass transit, and other systems that make cities livable. But when Boston University researchers surveyed 89 mayors last year, nearly 40 percent said that if they received a modest grant for extra infrastructure projects, they would spend it on parks or bike and pedestrian improvements. What’s more, 70 percent agreed with this statement: “Cities should make their roads more accessible to bicycles, even if it means sacrificing driving lanes and/or parking.”
Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic cities are leading the pack. According to the Alliance for Biking and Walking, Washington, D.C., and Boston have more commuters who walk or bike to work (16.7 percent) than other large U.S. cities. They’re also the safest, with 1.6 fatalities per 10,000 commuters. New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore rank close behind. Want to make your own city more pedestrian- and bike-friendly? Below are five proven strategies.