The League of American Bicyclists cancelled the in-person 15-17 March National Bike Summit and made it an online experience for the first time because of the COVID-19 emergency. At this summit, advocates were coming together to collaborate on a shared vision of Safe Streets for Everyone, this year’s Summit theme. In plenary and panel sessions and keynote talks, Summit attendees were learning how to influence federal policy and how their peers across the country were confronting the public health crisis facing America. People who bike, walk, or use a wheelchair are in increasing danger on the roads, preventing more Americans from enjoying the benefits of biking and doing physical activity.
Also, the current COVID-19 emergency is highlighting the importance of having a safe bike infrastructure. People who have the option to bike appear to be avoiding the confined spaces of trains, buses, taxis, and ride-hail in cities like New York, Philadelphia, or San Francisco. All these cities have developed an optimal network of protected bike lanes in the last decade.
However, safe transportation by bike is not an option for many Americans in communities that are underserved by an often incomplete or non-existent secure infrastructure for the bike. This is the main reason why we will continue in ZICLA to help cities create more accessible, sustainable, inclusive and friendly streets.