‘Ride Illinois’ and State Legislators Make Illinois Even More Bike-Friendly

Young woman cycling in the park at sunsetIllinois residents already know that their state is one of the most bicycle-friendly states in the country, and a couple new improvements aim to increase support for even more people to grab their bikes and head outside.

The first update, as reported by the Chicago Tribune, is that the pavement is finally down for the bicycle path on Washington Street (located between Atkinson Road and the College of Lake County). Drivers and bikers have been eagerly awaiting the finished project ever since August, and it looks almost complete — the only thing left is to remove the orange cones.

Bikers are welcome to visit www.lakecountypassage.com to see a live-traffic video feed of the path — and maybe be the first ones to spot when the orange cones are gone!

Next up, the public advocacy group the League of Illinois Bicyclists has officially renamed its organization as “Ride Illinois.” According to the group’s president, “Our organization made a bold decision to seek out a new name that would appeal to a wide audience and align them with our mission — a name that would inspire everyone to get on a bike and Ride Illinois.”

And last but not least, the fourth annual Illinois Bike Summit at the iHotel in Champaign was recently held on October 28, 2015. Around 300 people attended and there over 30 speakers and 15 seminars. If you happened to miss the summit, which is sponsored by Ride Illinois, be sure to catch it next year! By that time, you might just be seeing one brand-new bicycling innovation that was a hot topic in this year’s summit: battery-powered e-bikes.

The updates all follow Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s completion of 10 miles of protected bike lanes in Chicago, according toDNAinfo Chicago. Considering that Americans take an estimated nine million bike trips every single day, and that Illinois has a large population of avid bicyclists, it’s not surprising that Emanuel stated he hopes to construct an additional 50 miles of protected bike lanes.

For the No. 2 Most Bike-Friendly City in America (as named by Bicycle Magazine), there are sure to be plenty of additional bike updates in the near future.