This Is the Best American City for Bikers

There are at least two types of biking in and around big cities. Urban bikers dodge car traffic, often with the hope that bike lanes will make travel safer. Nevertheless, city bike riders get hit and sometimes killed each year. Then there are the suburban bikers who wear suits like the pros and ride on long country roads, sometimes for hours or even days. For them, bikes represent a sort of recreation and sometimes serious competition.

Over 100 Americans have a bicycle, whether they ride it or not. Inexpensive bikes can cost less than $100. Riders often shell out $1,000 or more for serious recreational bikes. This makes the sale of bikes a relatively small but widespread industry.

For its recent 2022’s Best Biking Cities in the U.S. report, lawn services firm LawnStarter “compared the 200 biggest U.S. cities based on 24 key indicators of a cyclist-friendly lifestyle, such as access to bike lanes and bike rentals, the share of bike commuters, the presence of cycling clubs, and the number of bike races and tours.”

In detail, the methodology reviewed the number of bike lanes, biking fatalities, bike sharing, bike renting, bike theft and bike clubs, among other things. Sources included AllTrails, Bikeshare.com, Bike Index, the League of American Bicyclists, Meetup, National Center for Disaster Preparedness, National Centers for Environmental Information, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, TRIP, U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, USA Cycling, Vision Zero Network, Walk Score, World Naked Bike Ride and Yelp.

Cities were ranked on a scale of one to 100. San Francisco topped the list with a score of 72.13. Nearby San Jose ranked 15th with a score of 52.89. Cities near the Pacific Ocean and in the Northeast dominated the rankings.

These are the top 25 cities for biking:

CityOverall ScoreAccess RankSafety Rank
San Francisco, Calif.72.13127
Minneapolis, Minn.65.5251
New York, N.Y.64.4549
Portland, Ore.63.40212
Eugene, Ore.62.2138
Boston, Mass.61.57112
Denver, Colo.60.94910
Seattle, Wash.60.18621
Washington, D.C.59.341620
Chicago, Ill.57.10333
Madison, Wis.54.66177
Fort Collins, Colo.54.23734
Albuquerque, N.M.53.781523
San Diego, Calif.53.532530
San Jose, Calif.52.891428
Philadelphia, Pa.52.635311
Alexandria, Va.52.56214
Tempe, Ariz.52.34735
Los Angeles, Calif.52.006032
Sacramento, Calif.51.872416
Richmond, Va.51.623822
Orlando, Fla.51.141814
Salt Lake City, Utah50.6612113
San Antonio, Texas50.643913
Houston, Texas50.442726


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