The program is intended to support communities in their efforts to be bike friendly, by providing “incentives, hands-on assistance, and award recognition” for communities that support cycling.
The program was launched in last week during the Association of Municipalities of Ontario annual conference in Windsor. During last nights city council meeting, there were comments that hinted that Windsor may be applying to be graded as a Bicycle Friendly Community, and councillor Halberstadt was quoted as saying ““I think we need to apply right away (to the program) and see where we rate” in a recent Windsor Star article about the program.
The Bicycle Friendly Communities program rates a community on five Es: Engineering, Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, and Evaluation/Planning. A committee will review the application and then grade the community, and awards of bronze, silver, gold and platinum can be given out, which last for four years. Recommendations are also given on how to reach the next level.