The League of American Bicyclists honored the efforts of the City of Lewes to build better places for people to bike with a recertification of the Bronze-level Bicycle Friendly Community Award.
The City of Lewes joins 485 communities across the country in the movement for safer streets and better bicycling for everyone. The award recognizes Lewes for its commitment to creating transportation and recreational resources that benefit its residents of all ages and abilities while encouraging healthier and more sustainable transportation choices. The city first received this award in 2012.
“During one of the toughest years in recent memory, we have seen so many Americans turn to biking during the pandemic for fun and for necessary transportation options. It’s so important that communities like Lewes have laid the groundwork over several years to make biking a safe, accessible option for people when we all need as much health and happiness as possible,” said Bill Nesper, executive director of the League of American Bicyclists. “This Bicycle Friendly Community Award is the culmination of years of work put in by its citizen advocates for better biking. This award round, Lewes joins 51 new and renewing Bicycle Friendly Communities in the movement toward healthier, more sustainable and connected places. As we turn the page on 2020 and look ahead to 2021, we’re proud that Lewes and communities like it are embracing bicycling as a solution to our collective recovery.”
The League of American Bicyclists’ Bicycle Friendly America program sets the standard for how communities build and benchmark progress toward making biking better. This round of awards includes 51 new and renewing awardees, joining a total of 485 current Bicycle Friendly Communities in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The Bronze-level BFC award recognizes Lewes’s commitment to improving conditions for all people who bike through investments in bike education programs, regular bike events that promote and encourage people to choose biking, pro-bike policies, and bike infrastructure.
“The Lewes Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee has worked tirelessly to educate the community regarding bicycle safety,” said Lewes Mayor Ted Becker. “The nexus of the Junction Breakwater Trail, the Gordons Pond Trail and the expanding Lewes to Georgetown Trail make Lewes the ideal community for cyclists to experience the health benefits and pleasures that cycling provides. I commend the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee on their continued efforts to promote safe cycling throughout the Lewes community and region.”
More than 850 communities have applied for recognition by the Bicycle Friendly Community program, which provides a roadmap to making biking better for communities of all shapes and sizes. While the award process considers very visible elements such as bike infrastructure, other essential elements include efforts around adult and youth bike education, encouragement through events like Bike to Work Day and Bike Rodeo at Lewes Night Out, evaluation mechanisms, and enforcement, all through the lens of equity. The rigorous application process is an educational tool in itself and includes an opportunity for local bicyclists and active transportation advocates to provide input on their experiences and perceptions of bicycling in their community.
The five levels of the BFC award – diamond, platinum, gold, silver and bronze, plus an honorable mention category – provide a clear incentive for communities to continuously improve. Awarded communities must renew their status every four years to ensure that they not only maintain existing efforts, but also keep up with changing technology, national safety standards, and community-driven best practices.
For more information, go to bikeleague.org/community.