Ride IllinoisRide Illinois
May 12, 2022

2022 National Bike Summit

The annual National Bike Summit, hosted by the League of American Bicyclists, took place in Washington D.C. and virtually from March 27-30th. Ride Illinois staff and dozens of advocates from Illinois were in attendance. The theme of the 2022 Summit was ‘Choosing Our Future”. Learn more about the 2022 National Bike Summit at bikeleague.org/summit.

With anticipated big wins for investments in biking infrastructure ahead, now is the time to do the work of engaging with new partners, uplifting underserved communities, and ensuring we build networks on the ground and among movements. Session included a variety of meaningful discussions, opportunities to learn from others, and several mobile workshops that highlighted bike infrastructure in the nation’s capital.

Lobby Day

The culmination of each National Bike Summit is Lobby Day. On March 30th, 22 advocates from across Illinois spent the better part of their day meeting with U.S. House and Senate members from Illinois and their staff via Zoom

During the course of the day, advocates spoke with Senator Durbin’s office and the office of 11 House representatives about two programs that were included in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), but not funded. If funded, these programs will increase safety for vulnerable road users and increase funding for cities to combat climate change.

  • The Active Transportation Infrastructure Investment Program (ATIIP) would provide one billion in direct competitive grant funding over five years to help eligible entities build connected active transportation systems that ensure people can get where they want to go safely biking, walking or rolling, while reducing carbon emissions and creating new jobs.
  • The Healthy Streets Program works to reduce flooding, improve air quality, and mitigate the urban heat island effect within communities of color and low-income communities by providing grants to state and local governments, as well as nonprofits, to both plant trees and deploy Smart Surfaces, such as reflective pavement in urban heat islands and porous pavement in flood prone areas.

Elected Officials

The Illinois delegation appreciates the time that the elected officials and staff took to listen to our appeal. Each conversation concluded with asking the elected official for their support to fund the two programs. While the answer to those pointed questions was often “we’ll need to learn more before committing” the response was overwhelmingly positive.

Below is a list of the offices with whom the Illinois delegation met during Lobby Day:

  • Senator Dick Durbin
  • Rep. Robin Kelly (IL-2nd District)
  • Rep. Marie Newman (IL-3rd District)
  • Rep. Chuy Garcia (IL-4th District)
  • Rep. Mike Quigley (IL-5th District)
  • Rep. Sean Casten (IL-6th District)
  • Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (IL-8th District)
  • Rep. Jan Schakowsky (IL-9th District)
  • Rep. Mike Bost (IL-12th District)
  • Rep. Rodney Davis (IL-13th District)
Members of the Illinois delegation during the meeting with Senator Durbin.

The Illinois Delegation

Speaking with elected officials can be a bit unnerving. As a result of the training offered by the League of American Bicyclists and the discussions the Illinois delegation had prior to Lobby Day, the conversations were meaningful and focused. Ride Illinois would like to thank the following individuals for actively participating in Lobby Day meetings:

  • Bartlett: Terry Witt
  • Chicago: Elizabeth Adamczyk, Kevin Dekkinga, Rebecca Resman
  • Chicago Heights: Larry Mysz
  • Downers Grove: Bill Chalberg
  • Elk Grove Village: Dave Simmons
  • Elmhurst: Armaline Mirretti
  • Lebanon: George Fero
  • Lombard: Kim Messina
  • Palatine: Ralph Banasiak
  • Skokie: Ben Harris, Charlie Saxe
  • Springfield: Tom Clark
  • Urbana: Cynthia Hoyle, Audrey Ishii, Charles Smyth, Jeff Yockey
  • Willow Springs: Gina Kenny

Next Steps

We’ve had an opportunity to follow up with those with whom we met with during Lobby Day. After all, we want the programs and topics we discussed must remain top of mind!

Ride Illinois encourages citizens from around the state to contact their elected officials to discuss the importance of safety and infrastructure in their community. We’re happy to offer our expertise prior to contacting your elected officials. Contact us at info@rideillinois.org or (630) 216-9282.

Search for your elected officials on the Illinois State Board of Elections website. Then, give them a call or send an email to voice your concerns and suggestions to improve biking and safety in your community.

Please share your experience (and the response from your elected officials) with Ride Illinois via email or phone. Together, we are making Illinois better through biking!

D.C. has invested heavily in bike infrastructure which made getting around by bike easy and safe.