Bikeability

Desired Trend

Up

Current Trend

Up
Baseline (2013): 654 miles
Current (2017): 884 miles

Theme Connected

Definition

Number of miles of on-road bike facilities and shared-use paths

Why is it Important?

Bicycling is a low-cost form of transportation and exercise, and unlike many other transportation modes, does not emit pollution. Bicycle facilities such as protected bike lanes provide improved safety compared with major streets without bicycle facilities.1 In addition, bike facilities encourage new riders to try biking, which can help reduce congestion and pollution by taking cars off the road.

How are we Doing?

As of 2017 there are at least 884 miles of bike facilities in the St. Louis region.2  This is an increase from an estimated 654 miles in 2013. Total mileage of facilities includes off-road shared-use paths (trails that allow multiple recreational uses such as biking, walking, and inline skating) as well as on-road facilities, which includes bike lanes, buffered bike lanes, shared-lane markings, designated paved shoulders, and some of the roads with “Share the Road” signs (data on “Share the Road” signs is incomplete). There are around 513 miles of shared-use paths, 198 miles of shared road facilities, and 173 miles of dedicated on-street facilities.   

In addition to these bike facilities, three national routes go through the St. Louis region – the American Discovery Trail (ADT), the Mississippi River Trail (MRT), and Route 66 Trail. The ADT stretches from California to Delaware while the MRT connects Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico and cyclists can take Route 66 from Chicago to Santa Monica Pier in Los Angeles. These routes are comprised of shared-use paths and on-road facilities. Portions of these routes are included in the total mileage for the region because some of these facilities use existing on-street facilities. Other portions are not included in the total mileage because on-road facilities do not exist at some points along the routes. 

Overall, this figure is an estimate, and the exact mileage of bicycle facilities may differ due to difficulties in identifying facilities. For example, some bicycle facilities may have been constructed without being recorded. Alternatively, some facilities may have deteriorated but are still reported as usable facilities. 

Geographic Level

St. Louis eight county bi-state region, including Franklin, Jefferson, St. Charles and St. Louis counties and city of St. Louis in Missouri and Madison, Monroe and St. Clair counties in Illinois. View map.

Notes

1Teschke, Kay et al. Route Infrastructure and the Risk of Injuries to Bicyclists: A Case-Crossover Study, American Journal of Public Health, December 2012, 102:12; Accessed on 18 February 2014 at http://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/pdf/10.2105/AJPH.2012.300762

2The region’s bicycle facilities are managed by many different entities. There is not one central agency in charge of tracking all bicycle facilities in the region. Therefore data for the baseline was revised from previous estimates based on additional data and understanding of the data. 

Data Sources

Great Rivers Greenway, Metro-East Parks & Recreation, HeartLands Conservancy, and East-West Gateway Council of Governments