Bicyclists along road

The Adventure Cycling Association and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials announced the designation of 18 new bicycle routes in five states, adding 2,903 miles to U.S. Bicycle Route System.

[Above photo by WSDOT]

The two groups said the new routes in California, Indiana, Ohio, Utah, and Washington State represent the largest addition to the USBRS to date in terms of both the number of designations and their total mileage. They added that two other routes – one in California and the other in Florida – were “realigned” to improve the bicycling experience.

With those new designations, the USBRS now extends 17,734 miles across 31 states and Washington, D.C., with at least 40 states currently developing U.S. Bicycle Routes.

“Twice each year, state departments of transportation play a significant role in the expansion of the U.S. Bicycle Route System by designating new routes,” said Jim Tymon, AASHTO’s executive director, in a statement.

“This summer, we are not only witnessing the highest number of designations in any single period to date, but we are also seeing why making improvements to existing routes when possible is important,” he noted. “In Northern California, for example, officials realigned U.S. Bicycle Route 50 to take advantage of a new paved path that is making cycling in the region safer and better than ever before.”

“With this addition of nearly 3,000 miles, the U.S. Bicycle Route System continues to pick up momentum — and the growth of the system benefits every person who has, is, or will be traveling by bike,” added Scott Pankratz, executive director of Adventure Cycling. “Adventure Cycling applauds our state department of transportation partners, who understand the role bike travel plays in our national infrastructure, supporting health and wellness, transforming communities, and increasing economic activity across the country.”

On February 23, AASHTO and Adventure Cycling signed a memorandum of understanding or MOU to formalize their 16-year partnership, which seeks to establish more than 50,000 miles of bike routes across the country.