Columbia University named a Bicycle Friendly University by the League of American Bicyclists

Columbia University named a Bicycle Friendly University by the League of American Bicyclists

First New York City Institution of Higher Education to be Recognized

Free bicycle tune-ups, one of the many perks during Columbia's Bike to Campus Day

October 22, 2014 - Today, the League of American Bicyclists recognized Columbia University with a Bronze Bicycle Friendly University (BFUSM) award, joining 100 visionary colleges and universities from across the country.

Columbia joins a group of colleges and universities from across the United States transforming their campuses and the communities around them. There are now 100 BFUs in 37 states and Washington, D.C. Columbia is the first university in New York City to receive the designation, and one of only six universities in New York State.

"We are thrilled to be recognized as a Bicycle Friendly University," said Joe Ienuso, executive vice president for Columbia University Facilities and Operations. "We look forward to working with the League and our University community to find even more ways to encourage biking as part of our commitment to a healthy and sustainable campus environment."

Creating a more bike friendly campus has helped reduce car parking demand, improve the health of the University community and promote an easy, alternative method of transportation to and around campus. Columbia encourages bicycling through amenities such as discounts at local bike shops, free bicycle registration with the NYPD and University Public Safety, bicycle parking across all campuses, discounted shower passes at the Medical Center fitness center, free workshops on bicycle maintenance and safety skills, and regular Bike to Campus days which feature free bike tune-ups.

A cross-functional Active Travel/Bicycling Working Group was formed by the Office of Work/life Wellness Program in 2013 to spearhead initiatives and policies that support a bicycle friendly environment. Members of the working group include employees from the University's Operations, Public Safety, Work/Life, Environmental Stewardship, Transportation, and Government and Community Affairs departments. "This designation is a wonderful recognition of the collaborative efforts of staff across the University," said Associate Provost and Director of Work/Life Carol Hoffman, who chairs the working group. "We are committed to encouraging healthy, active lifestyles for our diverse campus community, and part of that commitment is to create and develop a bike friendly culture."

Moving forward, Columbia will have access to a variety of free tools and technical assistance from the League to become even more bicycle-friendly.

"Campus leaders are recognizing the real-time and long term impact that a culture of bicycling can create," said Andy Clarke, President of the League of American Bicyclists. "We applaud this new round of colleges and universities for investing in a more sustainable future for the country and a healthier future for their staff, students and surrounding communities."

To learn more about biking at Columbia, visit http://worklife.columbia.edu/bicycling. To learn more about the BFU program, visit www.bikeleague.org/university.