NewsCovering Kentucky


Transy prepares for Bike Walk Kentucky Summit, aiming to increase access, safety

Posted at 9:27 PM, Jul 08, 2024

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Transylvania University is at the center of a statewide initiative to increase cycling and walking options in Kentucky.

"In Kentucky, there's about 100 pedestrians or cyclists that are killed every year which is 100 too many," said Sharon Brown.

Brown is a professor of health and exercise science at Transy, and also a board member for Bike Walk Kentucky.

The advocacy organization in the Commonwealth is playing an important role as Transy prepares to host the Bike Walk Kentucky Summit.

"This is super important for our health and our communities that we invest," said Brown.

The push is to make it more user-friendly throughout the city and the state. About 400 leaders will come together in August, and the goal is to improve Kentucky's ranking nationwide.

The League of American Bicyclists ranks all states in terms of bike friendliness and Kentucky is making strides.

"In 2018, when the summit was held, Kentucky was 43rd, last year, Kentucky was 37th," said Keith Lovan, the state bicycle and pedestrian coordinator for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.


This year, Kentucky may crack the top 30 among the most bike-friendly states, according to Lovan.

The cabinet had a car-centric focus for years, but now there's a different attitude.

"Now we have a complete streets policy that says we're designing our roads for all users all the time," said Lovan.

This means designing roads to protect bicyclists and pedestrians, ensuring safety, a crucial part of Kentucky's Bike Walk Summit.

"So if people can come to the summit, they will learn more about it, and have ideas to bring back to their communities to make them healthier and safer," said Brown.

In 2023, Fayette County had 22 bike and pedestrian fatalities, according to Lovan, who is also a board member for Bike Walk Kentucky.

Numbers from the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety show 53 non-motorized fatalities to date in 2024.

Last year, Kentucky had 137.

In the year of the last Bike Walk Summit, 2018, Kentucky had 4400 miles of bike and pedestrian facilities. Now, the state has 6100.

If you'd like to attend Kentucky's Bike Walk Summit taking place August 15 and 16, you can register here.