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NEW & IMPROVED: BICYCLE FRIENDLY COMMUNITY APPLICATION
Earlier this week, we re-launched the new and improved Bicycle Friendly Community application, and it’s got a lot of exciting improvements. Communities who are interested in applying or who need to re-apply in order to maintain their recognition can now access the application at apply.bikeleague.org.
Since the Bicycle Friendly Community program launched in 2002 more than 700 communities have applied, and 371 communities currently have a Bronze, Silver, Gold or Platinum designation. Like the other Bicycle Friendly America programs, BFC applications have been on the rise in recent years, and we don’t expect this trend to change any time soon.
The new application is still as robust and in-depth as ever, but the new multiple-choice format allows for a faster and easier time completing the application for communities. This change in format is based upon our experiences with the Bicycle Friendly Business program, which implemented this type of streamlined multiple-choice-based format in 2015.
The new multiple-choice format of the new BFC application acts as a great educational tool for advocates and aspiring BFCs: even if you don’t submit an application, you can still use the form as a comprehensive menu of the ways your community can become more bicycle-friendly.
The new application uses features available through our new application software so that some questions are hidden if they do not apply to a community. For example, if your community does not have a transit system, the application will not display transit system dependent questions. On our preview application Word document this dependency is marked by an asterisk (*). You can learn more about why we changed our application system and how our new system will provide a better experience here!
As of now the Bicycle Friendly Community program will not be implementing an application fee, as the BFB program has. However, we are actively considering how we can position the BFC program for future growth and how we can be responsive to feedback from the BFA Listening Session held at the 2016 National Bike Summit & Women’s Forum. If you are a community that has been preparing to apply using the most recent application then please apply by the August 9 deadline to ensure that your preparatory work matches the application. Stay tuned for more exciting developments about the BFC program and check out our past highlights on the League’s blog for inspiring stories of real Bicycle Friendly Communities.