United States Numbered Bicycle Routes
United States numbered bicycle routes are regional bicycle routes in the United States. They are the bicycle equivalent to the system of United States numbered highways. The system consisted of only two routes from its inception in 1982, until its first major expansion in 2011. As of 2012 eight parent routes and two child routes exist. Also, many proposed routes have recently moved into planning stages as of 2010. The planned routes largely overlay existing roads and bicycle path networks.
The U.S. Bicycle Route System was established in 1982 by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) for the purpose of "facilitat[ing] travel between the states over routes which have been identified as being more suitable than others for cycling."
Two routes were defined in 1982, and they remained the only routes in the system until 2011. In the interim, only minor routing changes had been made in Virginia.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 1 runs from the state of North Carolina to Virginia.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 76 runs from Illinois through Kentucky to Virginia.
AASHTO established a new task force in 2003 to study expansion of the system. The task force included state and federal highway officials and representatives from bicycling organizations. In October 2008, AASHTO approved a national-level corridor and route designation plan. Other organizations involved in the effort include state departments of transportation, the Federal Highway Administration, and the Adventure Cycling Association.
In early May 2011, the first major expansion of the system was made. Five new parent routes, two child routes, and one alternate route were created, along with modifications to the existing routes in Virginia and the establishment of Bicycle Route 1 in New England.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 1 now has an additional run from the state of Maine to New Hampshire.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 1A is a sea-side alternate route for Bike Route 1 in Maine.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 8 runs from Fairbanks, Alaska, along the Alaska Highway, to the Canadian border.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 20 runs from the Saint Clair River through the state of Michigan to Lake Michigan.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 87 follows the Klondike Highway from the Alaska Marine Highway terminal in Skagway to the Canadian border.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 95 follows the Richardson Highway from Delta Junction, Alaska to the Alaska Marine Highway terminal in Valdez.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 97 is entirely within Alaska, and it runs from Fairbanks, through Anchorage, to Seward.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 108 runs from its parent route in Tok, Alaska to Anchorage.
- U.S. Bicycle Route 208 follows the Haines Highway from the Alaska Marine Highway terminal in Haines to the Canadian border.
List of routes and planned corridors
Like United States Numbered Highways, even-numbered routes are planned to primarily run east-west, with low-numbered routes in the north and high-numbered routes in the south. Odd-numbered routes will primarily run north-south, with low-numbered routes starting in the east and ascending in number toward the west. Also, three-digit numbers are assigned to spurs of two-digit routes.
The existing U.S. Bicycle Route 1 will be the easternmost route, though U.S. Bicycle Route 5 will run farther east of it in Virginia and the Carolinas. The westernmost and northernmost routes are Route 97 and Route 8, respectively, both of which are in the State of Alaska. Outside of Alaska, the westernmost route is expected to be Route 95 and the northernmost Route 10. Route 90 is expected to be the southernmost route.
As of 2012, only eight parent routes officially exist, so most of the items listed below are presently defined only as "Prioritized Corridors" which are "50-mile wide areas where a route may be developed."Subsidiary routes are grouped with their one- or two-digit parent.
||This table's factual accuracy may be compromised due to out-of-date information. (August 2011)|
|Route number||States with approved routes||Locale||Official length||Formed||Notes|
|Maine, New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina||Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Washington, D.C., Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida||?||?||1982||One of the original routes, which only officially exists in Maine, New Hampshire, North Carolina, and Virginia, but unofficial signs exist along some of the planned route from the Canadian border in Maine to Key West, Florida. It is expected to be integrated with the East Coast Greenway.|
|Maine||Maine||178||286||2011||This is a sea-side alternative to U.S. Bicycle Route 1 in Maine.|
|USBR 5||Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia||0||0||Planned to run from Bike Route 76 in Virginia south to Savannah, Georgia, east of Bike Route 1.|
|Alaska||Alaska, Yukon, British Columbia||?||?||2011||The northern most in the system, Bike Route 8 was approved from Fairbanks to the Canadian border, following the Alaska Highway.|
|Alaska||Alaska||?||?||2011||A spur of Route 8 that starts in Tok and ends in Anchorage at Bike Route 97.|
|Alaska||Alaska, British Columbia, Yukon||?||?||2011||A spur of Route 8 that follows the Haines Highway.|
|USBR 9||New York||0||0||Planned to run from the Canadian border in New York to New York City. Initially planned to be designated Bike Route 3.|
|USBR 10||Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Washington||0||0||Northernmost planned route, in the contiguous United States, roughly following the U.S. Route 2 highway.|
|USBR 14||Montana, Idaho, Washington||0||0||Missoula, Montana to Seattle, Washington vicinity.|
|USBR 15||New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida||0||0|
|Michigan||Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon||310||499||2011||Routing in Michigan has been approved, from the international Bluewater Ferry to Canada in Marine City, Michigan, and is planned to incorporate the Lake Michigan Carferry crossing between Ludington, Michigan and Manitowoc, Wisconsin.|
|USBR 25||Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama||0||0||Planned to run from north of Detroit, Michigan south to Mobile, Alabama.|
|USBR 30||Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, Montana||0||0||Planned to incorporate a ferry crossing on Lake Michigan between Michigan and Wisconsin.|
|USBR 35||Michigan, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi||500||805||2012||Planned to run from Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan to Bike Route 45 on the Mississippi River in Mississippi or Louisiana. Michigan portion dedicated on May 19, 2012.|
|USBR 36||Michigan, Indiana, Illinois||0||0||Planned from Detroit, Michigan to Bike Route 45 along the Mississippi River in Illinois or Iowa.|
|USBR 37||Wisconsin, Illinois||0||0||Planned to run from Bike Route 10 near the border with Michigan's Upper Peninsula south to Chicago, Illinois. Originally planned as part of Bike Route 66.|
|USBR 40||New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, South Dakota, Wyoming||0||0||Planned to run from New York City to Yellowstone National Park.|
|USBR 41||Minnesota, Wisconsin||0||0||Planned to run from the Canadian border in Minnesota south to the Mississippi River and Bike Route 45 in Wisconsin.|
|USBR 45||Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Louisiana||0||0||2012||Planned to incorporate the Mississippi River Trail and run from northern Minnesota south to New Orleans, Louisiana, it is unclear whether this route will primarily run along either the west bank or east bank of the Mississippi River. Route was approved May 21, 2012.|
|USBR 50||Washington, D.C., Maryland, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, California||0||0||Planned to be one of the longest routes, stretching from Washington, D.C. in the east to near San Francisco, California.|
|USBR 55||North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas||0||0||Planned to run from the Canadian border in North Dakota south to the Mexican border in Texas.|
|USBR 65||North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas||0||0||Planned to run from Bike Route 10 in North Dakota south to Bike Route 84 near Lubbock, Texas.|
|USBR 66||Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California||0||0||Planned to roughly follow the U.S. Route 66 highway from Chicago, Illinois to Los Angeles, California. Originally planned to continue north to Wisconsin on what is now planned as Bike Route 37.|
|USBR 70||Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, California||0||0||Planned to run from Bike Route 76 in Colorado to Bike Route 66 in California.|
|USBR 75||Colorado, New Mexico, Texas||0||0||Planned to run from Bike Route 76 in Colorado to Bike Route 90 near El Paso, Texas|
|Virginia, Kentucky, Illinois||Virginia, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Oregon||?||?||1982||One of the two original routes, this is planned to be expanded to the longest route, running from the existing eastern terminus near the Atlantic Ocean in Virginia west to the Pacific Ocean west of Eugene, Oregon. The number refers to 1776 and the U.S. bicentennial year 1976 when this was the "Bikecentennial" route. Like Bike Route 1, unofficial signs exist in places along the route, which is officially only in Virginia, Kentucky, and Illinois.|
|USBR 79||Nevada, Utah, Arizona||0||0||Planned to run from Bike Route 50 near Reno, Nevada to Bike Route 90 near Phoenix, Arizona.|
|USBR 80||North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma||0||0||Planned to run from North Carolina coast to Oklahoma City|
|USBR 84||South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Texas, New Mexico||0||0||Planned to run from South Carolina coast to El Paso, Texas|
|USBR 85||Washington, Oregon, California||0||0||The easternmost of three routes serving the three West Coast states.|
|Alaska||Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California||?||?||2011||The middle route of three serving the three West Coast states and Alaska. It is planned to use the Alaska Marine Highway to connect Bellingham, Washington to Skagway, Alaska. Currently, the only approved route follows the Klondike Highway.|
|USBR 90||Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California||0||0||The southernmost route, running from near Jacksonville, Florida west to San Diego, California.|
|Alaska||Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California||?||?||2011||The westernmost planned route in the contiguous United States, Bike Route 95 currently runs from Delta Junction, Alaska to Valdez, via the Richardson Highway. It is planned to follow the Alaska Marine Highway from Valdez to Bellingham, Washington, and then it will go south to San Diego, California. It is expected to incorporate the Pacific Coast Bicycle Route.|
|Alaska||Alaska||?||?||2011||The western most route in the system, Bike Route 97 is entirely within Alaska, and it connects Fairbanks, Anchorage and Seward.|
- "AASHTO Approves New U.S. Bicycle Routes Across America". adventurecycling.org. Adventure Cycling Association. May 11 , 2011. Retrieved August 23, 2011.
- Sullivan, Ginny (May 11, 2011). "It's Official! New U.S. Bicycle Routes Approved". blog.adventurecycling.org. Adventure Cycling Association. Retrieved August 23, 2011.
- Adventure Cycling Association (June 2011) (PDF). The United States Bicycle Route System: Corridor Plan (Map). http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes/nbrn/USBRSCorridorMap.pdf. Retrieved August 23, 2011.
- Ray Lahood (July 2, 2010). "US Bicycle Route System begins connecting America". United States Department of Transportation. Retrieved July 7, 2010.
- AASHTO. Route Number Designations, via the Maine Department of Transportation website. Retained June 30, 1982. Retrieved May 12, 2006.
- AASHTO Ad Hoc Task Force on U.S. Bicycle Routes (PDF). Retrieved May 12, 2006.
- AASHTO Task Force on Numbered Bicycle Routes (PDF). Retrieved January 27, 2007.
- Adventure Cycling Association-Background on Current USBRS Effort. Retrieved June 28, 2009.
- Surface Transportation Authorization Act of 2009- Committee Draft. Retrieved June 28, 2009.
- Ray Lahood (June 17, 2011). "US Bike Route showing no signs of growing pains". United States Department of Transportation.
- Woodward, Calvin (December 21, 2008). "New interstate road map takes shape for bicyclists". The Intelligencer. Associated Press.
- "Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting US Bicycle Route 35 - Traverse City, MI". Michigan.gov/AASHTO 2012 Spring Meeting website. Retrieved May 15, 2012.
- "New U.S. Bicycle Routes Approved". Adventure Cycling Association (press release), May 21, 2012. Retrieved May 22, 2012.
- U.S. Bicycle Route System - Adventure Cycling Association
- The United States Bicycle Route System: Corridor Plan - Adventure Cycling Association
- U.S. Bicycle Routes - AASHTO