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People for Bikes has released its third annual ratings of the best cities for bicycling in the U.S. and Madison ranks second nationwide. For the last three years, Madison has ranked in the top 10 each year.

“Madison’s high ranking is a result of close collaboration of many City agencies, elected officials and our wonderful bike community,” said Yang Tao, Madison’s City Traffic Engineer. “We are on the right track, but still have a long way to go.”

“Madison is proud of consistently being ranked as one of the country’s top cities for bicycling,” said Renee Callaway, Madison Pedestrian Bicycle Administrator. “Although it is always nice to receive a top ranking, building more facilities and making infrastructure safety improvements are just one part of being a top city for bicycling. There is still much to do to ensure that everyone is considered when planning and encouraging biking for transportation and recreation.”

Tom Lynch, City of Madison Transportation Director agrees, “Increasing our bike mode share is imperative in meeting Madison’s future transportation needs. This recognition motivates us to continue to make biking accessible to all of our residents.”

The People for Bikes City Ratings program is a data-driven analysis that evaluates more than 550 cities and towns and shows city leaders how they can invest to make bicycling better for all residents and visitors.
City Ratings are scored across five key indicators:

  • Ridership (how many people are riding bikes)
  • Safety (how safe is it to ride bikes)
  • Network (how easy is it for people to bike where they want to go)
  • Reach (how well the network serves all parts of the community)
  • Acceleration (how fast the community is working to improve biking)

Madison’s highest scores were for Safety and for Acceleration. The City’s lowest score is on Reach. Many of the current scheduled projects, such as the extension of the West Towne Path under Gammon Road and a new path along Anderson St from Wright St to N Stoughton Rd, were developed to help extend the network and fill in gaps that keep all of Madison from being well connected by safe bicycle routes.

“Madison has a lot of work ahead of us to ensure that Madison is a top bicycle city for all of our residents. We need to ensure that safety improvements include ensuring that residents of every race and identity feel safe outside and on a bike and that they are part of shaping the future of bicycling in Madison,” Callaway concludes.

To stay on top of current bicycle projects and navigate other available resources for the City of Madison visit:
The full ratings are available at