Owen Ziliak/Sun-Times A cyclist rides west on Montrose Avenue on Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2023 in Ravenswood in Chicago. The city’s “bikeability” fell short on not having enough trails and bike shops, and having too many streets with 30 mph limits in two recent studies. Chicago has work to do to make its city streets more friendly to cyclists, according to two recent studies of how accessible cities are by bike.
One of the studies ranked 50 U.S. cities by their “bikeability” and put Chicago in the middle of the pack.
Chicago ranked 20th in the report published last month by Clever, a real estate website. Minneapolis came in first place, followed by Portland, Oregon, and San Francisco. The least bike-friendly city was Memphis, Tennessee. Owen Ziliak/Sun-Times A bicyclist rides in the bike lane under the Damen Brown Line station on Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2023 in Ravenswood in Chicago. Chicago ranked 161st out of 163 big cities and scored a seven out of 100. Speed limits tanked the city’s bikeability. The report’s analysis considers streets with a 30 mph speed limit — a standard for most Chicago streets — or higher as unsafe for cycling. The metrics Clever used to rank the cities included how “bikeable” the metro area is based on Walk Score’s bike score , the ratio of bike trails, bike shops, bike rental shops and bike shares per 100,000 residents; how many cyclists were involved in fatal car crashes in 2021 and the percentage of bike commuters.
“Chicago is better […]