A list in which Portland beats LA, San Francisco AND Seattle

Cathy Cheney | Portland Business Journal

New Seasons Market on North Williams has 64 bike parking spots, the most in the company. Portland is behind only New York and Chicago in bike commute numbers, according to new research.

Lift a glass and bust out your bragging caps Portland bike commuters.

When it comes to actual bike commuters, Portland has the entire West Coast beat.

In terms of the actual number of workers tooling around on bikes, Portland (18,912) ranks third only to New York (36,496) and Chicago (19,147). And they both have much larger populations.

For those wanting to brag on Portland to the neighbors, Los Angeles (17,223), San Francisco (16,864) and Seattle (15,007) came in fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively. Take that, Seattle!

So says Where We Ride, an analysis by the League of American Bicyclists based on the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 American Community Survey.

Not surprising, Portland was the cream of the crop with a 6.1 percent commute rate, enough to rank it first among cities with populations between 500,000 and 999,999.

Philadelphia (2.3 percent) is the top large city and Davis, Calif. is the top city (19.1 percent) for small cities.

Nationally, just 0.6 percent of American bike to work, according to the survey.

But the numbers are rising.

That brings us to our final bragging point: Portland’s bicycle commute rate rose a whopping 430.3 percent between 1990 and 2012. Only Washington D.C. (445.4 percent) did better.

Need more conversational fuel? There’s plenty more to parse in the report, available here.


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