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Walking and Biking in Ann Arbor Is a Breeze

As for mobility in this Michigan city, you've got plenty of options (including a bright autonomous future!)

By Kevin Litwin on December 28, 2021

Bike-in event, during which residents bike through Ann Arbor to a location for a post-ride activity
Aaron Valdez

With its college town vibe, Ann Arbor is a progressive city where many full-time residents and University of Michigan (U-M) students take to the streets and trails to enjoy walking and biking.

In fact, A-Squared has won a number of awards for its efforts to make the city more walkable and bike friendly to promote an active lifestyle. Redfin.com ranked the downtown Ann Arbor district as the most walkable neighborhood among midsized Midwest cities.

Walking in Ann Arbor

Redfin.com ranked the downtown Ann Arbor district as the most walkable neighborhood among midsized Midwest cities.

Redfin pointed out that more college students, millennials and young professionals are moving into new apartments and condominiums in downtown Ann Arbor, and the district is the place to go before and after Michigan Wolverines football games. The downtown also has easy-to-walk-to attractions like the Michigan Theater, Hands-On Museum for kids and dining destinations like Arbor Brewing Company, Blue Tractor BBQ & Brewery and Zingerman’s Delicatessen.

Common Cycle, an Ann Arbor nonprofit that empowers residents to ride bicycles
Common Cycle

A Bicycle Friendly City

For those who enjoy exercise on two wheels, Ann Arbor is designated a Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists. A bike share program that is supported by the city |and U-M encourages short trips around town and is highly popular.

Plenty of Peddling Possibilities

The city of Ann Arbor offers 79 miles of bike lanes
and 900 downtown bike parking spaces.

The city of Ann Arbor even has a detailed PDF bicycle map that shows the various bike lanes, routes and shared-use trails available in Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County. Copies of the maps are available at the Larcom City Hall transportation information center, bike shops and the Ann Arbor Parks & Recreation Department.

And for mountain bikers, the Ann Arbor region features a highly ranked BMX course as well as single-track trails in some of its natural areas.

Ann Arbor SPARK is involved in several initiatives to further promote mobility technology in the region.
Ann Arbor SPARK

Other Quiet Rides

Besides walking and biking, this region is also leveraging its expertise in autonomous technology development to improve mobility, including Ford Motor Company piloting a City Insights Platform.

The platform analyzes data of Ann Arbor parking structures, parking meters, bus systems, scooters and other transit-related features that let city planners explore better future solutions for their entire transportation system.

Speaking of transit, autonomous vehicles are becoming a common sight here and have emerged as a popular transit solution. To further promote the mobility technology of the region, Ann Arbor SPARK is currently involved in several initiatives, while the American Center for Mobility at the Willow Run site in Ypsilanti is among many area organizations and companies involved in the development and testing of advanced mobility solutions.

And a final quick stat. As for overall mobility, the mean commute time for people going to work in Ann Arbor is 24 minutes, which is below the state and national average.

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