For anyone in doubt that Richmond is a friendly place, the city has just earned that moniker from two national organizations promoting community engagement in running and cycling.
The Road Runners Club of America (RRCA) has named RVA one of five Runner Friendly Communities in its first round of designations for 2014. The program’s criteria for nomination include “infrastructure that can foster physical activity in a safe environment,” “a proven track record of organizations and businesses working together to promote running,” and “positive relationships between the running community and local government.” Other cities recognized were Belleville, Illinois; Rockwall, Texas; Safety Harbor, Florida; and Spokane, Washington.
The RRCA cites Richmond’s wealth of trails, parks and pedestrian networks; its runner-friendly businesses and organizations; and events such as the Anthem Richmond Marathon and Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K as contributing factors in the city’s nomination. “The Richmond area is being recognized for its support for running and promoting a healthy lifestyle that benefits all the Richmond residents,” says Goody Tyler, Virginia state representative of the RRCA.
Meanwhile, RVA’s cyclist-friendly organizations have won recognition from the League of American Bicyclists. The City of Richmond and the Metropolitan Richmond Sports Backers join more than 650 businesses, government agencies and companies across the United States with Bicycle Friendly Business (BFB) awards, recognizing those that design their offices to accommodate bikes and cyclists and promote and celebrate safe riding.