On Wednesday, Adventure Cycling Association announced that the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials' (AASHTO) is providing Adventure Cycling $5,000 to assist states with route selection and the technical aspects associated with the development of a U.S. Bicycle Route System (USBRS).
"This marks the sixth year of our partnership with Adventure Cycling," said John Horsley AASHTO’s executive director. "We are pleased to contribute funds that will provide technical support and other resources to the states as they work to create a U.S. Bicycle Route System."
On May 2, Adventure Cycling kicked off a grassroots fundraising effort to raise $30,000 to support its ongoing organizing and technical assistance efforts for the emerging route network. "We’re very please with AASHTO’s support of our work on the U.S. Bicycle Route System," said Ginny Sullivan, coordinator for the USBRS and Adventure Cycling’s special projects director. "We’ve worked together for six years, but in many ways this project is just ramping up as states begin work on implementation and submitting applications to AASHTO for new route approvals. It’s an exciting phase!"
Adventure Cycling's Build It. Bike It. Be a Part of It. campaign will run through National Bike Month, ending on Tuesday, May 31, 2010. Using social media tools, a group of dedicated fundraisers, and leveraged funds from a diverse roster of business and organizational donors, Adventure Cycling hopes to inspire cyclists across America to donate $10 or more to help build this national network of cycling routes. As of today, Adventure Cycling has raised over $20,000 through this effort.
Thirty states are now working on U.S. Bicycle Routes and during the first week of May, AASHTO approved the first new U.S. Bicycle Routes in over 30 years. AASHTO is a nonprofit, nonpartisan association representing highway and transportation departments in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. A powerful voice in the transportation sector, its primary goal is to foster the development of an integrated national transportation system.
"With the new route approvals and widespread state support for the U.S. Bicycle Route System, we had hoped to see slightly more robust donations during this year’s campaign," said Winona Bateman, Adventure Cycling’s media director and an organizer of the campaign. "However, we are tracking ahead of last year and AASHTO’s generous donation puts us much closer to our goal." Last year, the campaign raised over $27,000.
The U.S. Bicycle Route System is a proposed national network of bicycle routes that span multiple states and are of national and regional significance. These routes will serve as visible and well-planned trunk lines for connecting city, regional, and statewide cycling routes, and provide transportation and tourism opportunities across the country.
A highly collaborative effort, the U.S. Bicycle Route System project is spearheaded by a national AASHTO task force and involves officials and staff from state DOTs, the Federal Highway Administration, and nonprofits organizations such as Adventure Cycling, the East Coast Greenway Alliance, and Mississippi River Trail, Inc.
Adventure Cycling has provided dedicated staff support to the U.S. Bicycle Route System project since 2005.
Since 2006, Adventure Cycling's work on the U.S. Bicycle Route System has been supported by Adventure Cycling members and donors, as well as by grants from Bikes Belong, Educational Foundation of America, Lazar Foundation, New Belgium Brewing Company, SRAM Cycling Fund, the Surdna Foundation, and last year, by funds from AASHTO’s Center for Environmental Excellence.
When complete, the U.S. Bicycle Route System will be the largest official bike route network on the planet, encompassing more than 50,000 miles of routes. Learn more at www.adventurecycling.org/usbrs.
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Adventure Cycling Association is the largest membership cycling organization in North America with nearly 45,000 members. A nonprofit organization, its mission is to inspire people of all ages to travel by bicycle. It produces routes and maps for cycling in North America, organizes more than 45 tours annually, and publishes the best bicycle-travel information anywhere, including Adventure Cyclist magazine and The Cyclists' Yellow Pages online. With 40,699 meticulously mapped miles in the Adventure Cycling Route Network, Adventure Cycling gives cyclists the tools and confidence to create their own bike travel adventures. Contact the office at (800) 755-BIKE (2453), firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.adventurecycling.org.