Guest Editorial: Expanding Scottsdale’s Bicycle Footprint Is A Smart Move

By Scottsdale Pinetop

From trains, planes and automobiles – and back to the good old bicycle. It’s the changing reality for many cities across the country.

As the world works to control and eventually stop the spread of COVID-19, the pandemic has people abandoning their vehicles and turning to cycling as a resilient, reliable and recreational way of getting around.

And Scottsdale is embracing this new mindset head on.

According to city officials, the proposed 2.5-mile corridor would connect Tempe to Old Town Scottsdale along 70th Street and will connect to nearby biking trails and neighborhoods. This is part of the city’s effort to provide a “comfortable and connected bicycle network,” according to a recent Scottsdale Independent article.

Scottsdale residents are encouraged to provide their insight and suggestions regarding the “Bikeway Study” by November 30th on the city’s website.

Scottsdale already consists of over 174 miles of bike lanes and another 129 miles of paths cyclists can use. Since 2011, Scottsdale has a “Gold” status from the League of American Bicyclists as does Tempe. But there’s always room to improve.

This is a smart move by the city, not just for the immediate necessity – but for its long-term benefits. Bicycle tourism continues to be on the rise with visitors and residents alike renting bikes to increase their ability to connect to various parts of the valley in a safe and smart way.

Investing and expanding Scottsdale’s already established bike-friendly reputation is a critical asset for the city’s economic future, especially in a post-pandemic environment. We’ve written about the benefits bicycle tourism can bring to Scottsdale before.

At a time when city governments are reassessing past assumptions on tourism and economic development, this trend is an opportunity to embrace cycling as an integral part of urban transportation – not just to survive the current crisis, but to continue to invest in its future to stay competitive and in tune with changing mentalities of its residents.