Big wheels keep on turning across Utah as a new ranking shows vast improvement in cycling conditions.
The League of American Bicyclists' Bicycle Friendly States assessment this week ranked Utah the 13th friendliest state in the nation for cyclists. The state ranked 31st in 2011.
Bike Utah, the state's cycling advocacy organization, announced Utah's improvement between 2011 and 2012 in a news release.
Scott Lyttle, executive director of Bike Utah, attributed the higher ranking to efforts to improve riding conditions by the state departments of transportation and public safety as well as Bike Utah. He said an increase in the number of cycling education programs also helped.
The league's report card for Utah cited the state's safe passing law, which requires vehicles to allow 3 feet between a car and a bicyclist when passing, as a great success.
Utah's higher ranking also likely resulted from adjustments in the The League of American Bicyclists' surveying process, which included more discussion from cyclists compared to years past, Lyttle said.
The League of American Bicyclists evaluated states based on their use of infrastructure and funding to improve cycling conditions, educational programs on safe cycling and enforcement of bicycle friendly laws. Overall, Utah scored high marks across the board with the exception of the category of evaluation and planning.
"We look forward to working with Utah to improve conditions for people who bike for transportation and recreation," Andy Clarke, president of the League of American Bicyclists, said in the release.
Washington topped the rankings while Arkansas earned the 50th spot.
The nation's best states for cyclists
1 • Washington
2 • Minnesota
3 • Massachusetts
4 • Colorado
5 • Oregon
13 • Utah
50 • Arkansas
To see the entire list, visit http://bit.ly/KyZy0a
Source • League of American Bicyclists