The Slatest

Bicycle Commuting Rates Rocket From 0.5 Percent to 0.6 Percent in Only 32 Years

Denver Post Photo by Cyrus McCrimmon

Today the Census Bureau released the results of a big survey of how Americans commute to work, broken down by age/region/race/income/etc. The report’s self-attested top highlight:

The number of U.S. workers who traveled to work by bicycle increased from about 488,000 in 2000 to about 786,000 in 2008–2012, a larger percentage increase than that of any other commuting mode.

Sounds impressive. And bikes/bike lanes/bike commuting are something that you hear about all the time if you live in an urban area. The practice is both socially conscious and self-actualizing, its advocates say.


But how does it stack up against the other ways of getting to work overall? Is it a nationally significant movement, or the indulgence of a relatively negligible number of urban elites?


Census Bureau


[N.B.: Your author is not an automobile chauvinist. He believes in traversing dense urban areas by using public transportation and walking.]