Cyclists, business owners, and government leaders gathered for the 2014 Utah Bike Summit Friday to figure out how to make Utah a more bike friendly place.
The summit is hosted by Bike Utah. They’re hoping to help cyclists, advocates, city planners, and businesses understand how to leverage their resources to further bike centric planning and development. Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker, an avid rider, kicked off the conference. As mayor, he’s advocated to make it easier for biking to become a viable transportation option through several projects, including creating protected bike lanes. But Becker says these kinds of projects always receive strong pushback at first.
“If we’re going to keep making these improvements," he says, "if we’re going to keep becoming the number one cycling state and cycling community that we want to become, it needs to happen over the natural and very understandable objections of people who are not cyclists, and people who see cycling as an impediment to either their business or the way they get around and experience their community.”
Becker says to accomplish this, attendees need to get involved and be a part of their city’s process. The conference also included several breakout sessions and keynote presentations by representatives from the Utah Department of Transportation, Salt Lake City, the National Park Service, and many others.