Did You Know?

BY: Sharon Secor / November 09 , 2012

At more than $1 billion, biking in Minnesota generates as much revenue as hunting and snowmobiling combined. Find out more about how biking has a positive economic effect on our state.

You know biking is fun. You know biking is a great way to get exercise. You even know that biking is good for the environment and our air quality in Minnesota. But did you know that biking is also good for our state’s economic health?

Every time you get out and ride, you’re contributing to Minnesota’s health in a lot of great ways.

In 2004 the Minnesota Department of Transportation had a great idea. They said, “Let’s figure out how much biking brings to our state.” That year, they estimated economic revenues from biking at more than $300 million. In 2012, those revenues far exceed initial expectations. At more than $1 billion, biking in Minnesota generates as much revenue as hunting and snowmobiling combined.

We know what you’re thinking….biking is a pastime that pays, economically, for our state in a lot of ways.

Did you know that Minnesota has more bike friendly businesses than any other state, employing about 44,000 people? Twin Cities bike retail, wholesale and manufacturing companies generate more than $315 million annually in sales and services according to the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota.

Minnesota is home to the nation’s largest bike parts distributor (Quality Bike Parts), the nation’s largest bike tool manufacturer (Park Tools) and two of the nation’s largest bike dealers (Erik’s Bikes and Boards, and Penn Cycle). It’s also  home to the employees, owners and customers of more than 160 small bike businesses across our state.

And did you know that studies have shown  bike friendly communities tend to have higher property values than other communities? The more liveable, bikeable and walkable an area is, the healthier its residents tend to be as well.

Believe this— we’re on the trend-setting edge of an economic wave that a lot of places are trying to copy. We’ve built the infrastructure for biking, and our cities, towns and counties are hopping on board to help “fund” our statewide efforts.

Here’s another fact, the Department of Natural Resources states that we have more than 1,500 miles of paved bike trails.

(Heck, we’re a state that can claim the second-most bike commuters per capita and one of the nation’s newest and largest bike share programs.)

Every year, Minnesota receives accolades for our bike-friendly cities. Outside magazine named Minneapolis as one of its top ten biking cities and Bicycling magazine said we are the best biking city.

Bemidji, Albert Lea and Rochester are a few of our bike friendly cities that help contribute to our designation as second best biking state in the opinion of the League of American Bicyclists, the premier bike advocacy group in the nation.

Did you know? Biking is just, well, great for our state.

See More From: Sharon Secor

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  1. Good stuff all around!Bon