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Bike Friendly Baseball Stadiums: The Definitive List

| Friday December 7th, 2012 | 5 Comments

This post is part of an ongoing series on the economic benefits of bicycling.

Image c/o SF Bike Coalition

Since 2004, the San Francisco Giants have offered free, secured valet parking for folks arriving via bicycle to see games (staffed by volunteers from the SF Bike Coalition).  It’s a marvelous way to get to the stadium, far faster & cheaper than pretty much any other way, and a lot more sustainable to boot.

It’s also excellent community engagement on the part of the Giants franchise, and has probably helped sell a few tickets.

It got me thinking about what other baseball teams have done (if anything) to embrace the concept of biking to the ballpark.  I spent some time today combing bike forums and the official websites of all 30 major league teams.  Although all 30 teams follow essentially the same website template, only half of them actually make any mention of bikes as a transportation option. Of those that do mention it, only a few do so prominently.

Based on these websites as well as some semi-subjective digging around, I’ve created a list of stadiums ranked on the ease by which one can safely park a bike during the game.

Scroll down to see the list:

There are 3 hands-down winners, a lot of teams making an effort, and a handful of teams I’d call laggards:

In addition to the San Francisco Giants, the Chicago Cubs provide a free, staffed bike valet for every game.  The San Diego Padres provide a staffed “Bike Parking Pavilion,” but only on Sunday games.

A number of other teams make a solid effort to emphasize biking to the game, with special pages on their sites explaining parking options and access to trails, in particular the Twins and the Brewers.  At least one team, the Royals, is explicitly opposed to biking to the game according to The Kansas Cyclist (hopefully that’s changed by now).

Please leave comments!

Bike Friendly Baseball Stadiums

3 = Superb, secure parking
2 = Special racks, effort made
1= Racks available but little effort
0 = Unknown or street parking
Team
City
Rating
Notes
RoyalsKansas City0Very suburban, poor access
AngelsAnaheim0Excellent trail access, parking situation unknown
PhilliesPiladelphia0Has Metro stop, but sea of parking
AthleticsOakland0Has Metro stop, but sea of parking
Devil RaysTampa0
RangersDallas (Arlington)0
OriolesBaltimore1Excellent transit, neighborhood design
DiamondbacksPhoenix1Excellent transit, neighborhood design
Red SoxBoston1Excellent transit, neighborhood design
IndiansCleveland1Excellent transit, neighborhood design
RedsCincinnati1Downtown, accessible in theory
TigersDetroit1Downtown, accessible in theory
YankeesNew York1Excellent transit, neighborhood design
CardinalsSt. Louis1Excellent transit, neighborhood design
GiantsSan Francisco3Free Bike Valet
CubsChicago3Free Bike Valet
PadresSan Diego3Free Bike Valet (Sundays)
BrewersMilwaukee2Excellent trail access
RockiesDenver2Excellent transit, neighborhood design
AstrosHouston2Excellent transit, neighborhood design
DodgersLos Angeles2
MarlinsMiami2
MetsNew York2Excellent transit, neighborhood design
PiratesPittsburgh2
MarinersSeattle2Excellent transit, neighborhood design
Blue JaysToronto2Excellent transit, neighborhood design
NationalsWashington2Excellent transit, neighborhood design
TwinsMinneapolis2Excellent trail access
BravesAtlanta1
White SoxChicago1Transit accessible

NOTES:

1) This list offers no ranking of the ease of getting to the stadium, only the parking options.  For example, San Francisco may have valet parking but navigating SF streets can be very intimidating for the uninitiated, or for kids.  Minneapolis, on the other hand, has miles of safe and easy bike paths criss-crossing the city despite lacking a formal valet.   I’ll try to amend the list later to take that into consideration.

2) Many of these stadiums have excellent transit options which gives them some distinction, despite not emphasizing bikes.

3) I’ve made a guess on some urban stadiums (like Yankee Stadium) that theoretical street parking probably exists, though I’ve no idea how secure it is or whether it’s explicitly encouraged by the team.


▼▼▼      5 Comments     ▼▼▼

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  • http://twitter.com/BaxterBiscuits Jeff Getsy

    SF isn’t a big surprise on this list. Dallas FW area just isn’t bike friendly. Unrelated, I liked the Ballpark at Arlington but it didn’t seem to fit the neighborhood.

  • Matt O’Toole

    I wouldn’t rate Angels/Anaheim stadium as all that poor. It’s right on the Santa Ana River Trail, a “bike superhighway” through Orange County if there ever was one. I don’t know about the stadium’s own bike parking, but OCTA and others have done bike valet service from time to time. Even without that, riding to the game from much of Orange County is pretty easy.

    • http://www.triplepundit.com Nick Aster

      Good to know. I’ll add some info on bike path connectivity since that’s certainly part of the package!

  • toddscott

    The score for the Detroit Tigers seems fair, but its difficult to be sure since I’m not familiar with the other ballparks. The Tigers have installed some bike racks but we need more. They’ve also hosted Bike to the Ballpark day with valet. Biking on the roads to the park is super easy. The park is located on Metro Detroit’s major bus transit corridor and all buses back bike racks in front.

  • http://la.streetsblog.org Damien Newton

    I would think the Dodgers would lose points because a) the parking staff doesn’t know where the parking is 2) the parking is riot gates that are repurposed 3) the bike parking and smoking area are the same place.