June 11, 2010
We are puzzled by some news we read earlier this week on Biking Bis and the U.S. Bicycle Route System Facebook page. Black Hawk, Colorado (pop. 118) has banned bicycles from most roads in their city. This includes roads we direct bicycle travelers to on our Great Parks South (GPS), Section 1.
As of this time, cyclists traveling our Great Parks South route have two options to avoid a $68 ticket for riding through Black Hawk:
In the bigger picture, there are other things you can do to let Black Hawk, a town that prides itself on having a tourism-based economy, know how you feel about its decision. Some of our suggestions are:
As a town that depends on tourism dollars to support its population, we're surprised that powers that be in Black Hawk seem unaware of the Bicycling and Walking in Colorado survey the state Department of Transportation did in 2000. It is very favorable to the idea that making cyclists welcome is a way to impact your economy positively. A more recently released study, The Economic Impact of Bicycling in Wisconsin (pdf), also shows cyclists and tourism in a favorable light.
We'd like to invite Black Hawk to revisit their decision. A good place to start is our web page, Building Bike Tourism, or Bicyclists Bring Business (pdf), a joint publication of the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor, Parks & Trails New York, and the New York State Canal Corporation. They might also want to note the number of communities eager to be a part of U.S. Bicycle Route 20 in Michigan as highlighted in a recent article in The Saginaw News. These local governments see the benefits of tourism dollars created by bicycle travelers and have opened their arms wide to receive them.
GEOPOINTS BULLETIN is written by Jennifer 'Jenn' Milyko, an Adventure Cycling cartographer, and appears weekly, highlighting curious facts, figures, and persons from the Adventure Cycling Route Network with tips and hints for personal route creation thrown in for good measure. She also wants to remind you that map corrections and comments are always welcome via the online Map Correction Form.