City of Rapid City receives Honorable Mention Designation from League of American Bicyclists

Despite the city receiving the Honorable Mention designation, there's still work to do.

RAPID CITY, S.D. — You see them in just about every major city.

Bicyclists finding a way to get around town. Whether they’re on their way to work or home — some in bike friendly cities.

The City of Rapid City isn’t considered a bike friendly community — yet  — but after a recent report from the League of American Bicyclists, the city has direction for how it can be.

The report says that the city can improve in three areas.

The first: performing a bicycle parking audit, which would tell the city how many bikes they having parking in the city and where they’re going.

“Whether you’re commuting to work, or to school or using it to run errands, go grocery shopping, or just using it as recreation, you want to stop and get a bite to eat,” said Kip Harrington, a Long Range Planner with the City of Rapid City. “Bicycle parking is really necessary so you have a place to lock your bike, make sure its safe and secure.”

The second:  creating a bicycle advisory committee, which Harrington says the city will look to initiate this summer.

As more people come to the area, the committee would listen to concerns of the public and bring them to city leaders.

“As planners, we can’t be everywhere at once and be all over the community, so we rely on them to tell us what we’re doing right and what things we can improve on,” Harrington said.

Harrington also says that while most people come to the Black Hills for bicycling trips, if the city were to receive a Bronze Designation, it could bring even more people to the area, whether that’s living here or just visiting.

The third, increasing the number of on- and off-street bike facilities.

Harrington says that making more of these facilities, like protected bike lanes, which separate bicyclists from traffic, will be considered.

“More communities are looking at what’s called protected bike lanes, where the bicyclists are separated from motor vehicles by either a curb or parking lane or something like that to give bicyclists their own dedicated space on the street and that’s something we’ll look at in the future as well,” Harrington said.

A direction for the city as it looks to become bicycle friendly.

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