Beyond Urban Centers
Active Transportation in Rural America
There are more than 20,000 miles of rail-trails crossing the nation and connecting towns and country. Getting out on the trail to enjoy the outdoors, exercise or spend time with friends and family is an option for everyone. However, when we think about commuting to work or running errands from A to B, many assume that active transportation is only an option for people in the largest cities, where many destinations are close together and the street network is supplemented by transit.
A new research report by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy demonstrates that, in fact, active transportation is a part of life even far beyond urban centers. From tiny Burlington, Wyo. (pop. 250), to Elvis' hometown in Tupelo, Miss. (pop. 39,000), kids, seniors and working people walk and bicycle at rates that are not so different from what you find in metropolitan areas.