Strap on those helmets and hop on your fixies: Massachusetts was recently named the third most bicycle-friendly state in the nation by the League of American Bicyclists, a national bike advocacy nonprofit group. The rankings, based on legislation, funding, infrastructure, education, planning and more, put Massachusetts as the number one state in the Northeast, and up from 9th place in 2011 and 16th in 2010.
And to just in time to celebrate this ranking, the Bay State is set to open 40 new miles of public bike trails across the eastern part of the state, according to a press release. The dirt and grass trails run through the following 14 cities and towns: Berlin, Boston, Clinton, Framingham, Marlborough, Natick, Needham, Newton, Northborough, Sherborn, Southborough, Wayland, Wellesley and Weston.
The trails, which run along Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) old water aqueducts, will come at little cost to the Authority, who will simply have to clear current fencing from the trails and occasionally trim the trees and grass along the paths, according to the Boston Globe. The MWRA will work with each community to get the trails ready for the public use, open to cyclists, hikers, leaf-peepers, bird-watchers and anyone else who just wants to venture away from the concrete jungle for some time.
Great move, Massachusetts. We can never have enough bike routes, and ones that bring us city-dwellers off of the pavement and into nature are a nice change of pace. Unfortunately, all 40 miles of the trails are not connected, but hey, that’s what makes it an adventure, right?
To check out a map of the trails from the Globe, click here.
Image via The Daily Green