Smile Politely Releases Bike Map

As promised, a new bike transportation map of Champaign-Urbana has been released. For the time being, the map is available as a free pdf on, but tens of thousands of copies will soon be available throughout C-U.

According to a press release from CCB, “20,000 copies will be made available at local bike shops, fitness centers, other retailers, and public buildings throughout the communities. 10,000 copies will be distributed on the University of Illinois campus.”

The map uses a color-coding system to denote which roads are more or less comfortable for a bicyclist. For example, Gregory Street is dark green with a black outline all the way across campus, meaning that it is a very comfortable street to ride on, with bike lanes on both sides. By contrast, Church Street in Champaign is yellow from New west to Victor, meaning that it is significantly less comfortable, with no bike lanes. Streets and highways that are not at all comfortable for bicycling are just depicted as white lines, as they would on a normal map. Difficult intersections are also called out with yellow circles. There is also a helpful inset which zooms in on Campustown, providing more detail.

Some of the obstacles to bicycling as transportation in C-U are made apparent with this map. For example, there are no routes that cross I-74 that rate better than yellow, and all of those are on the Urbana side. Also, most intersections that cross Prospect or Lincoln are regarded as “difficult.”

The map will be a great resource to newcomers to the community, as well as new bikers, and should provide some fresh ideas and conversation starters for experienced cyclists. Print out a copy now, and pick one up soon!

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