Share The Road

Bicycle Friendly Communities

About the Program

The Bicycle Friendly Community Award (BFC) Program provides incentives, hands-on assistance, and award recognition for communities that actively support bicycling. The BFC Program was launched by the Share the Road Cycling Coalition in Canada in August 2010 in partnership with the Washington based League of American Bicyclists.  

In Canada, the Canadian Automobile Association (South Central Ontario) is the major sponsor of the program, with additional support coming from Trek Canada.

City of Ottawa receives Gold designation in 2013

Communities complete a thorough application and are judged in five categories often referred to as the Five “ Es": Engineering, Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, and Evaluation & Planning. A community must demonstrate achievements in each of the five categories in order to be considered for an award on the Bronze, Silver, Gold or Platinum or Diamond level. Applications are judged by a volunteer panel of expert judges and communities with more significant achievements in these areas receive higher awards. The BFC application is a great self-assessment tool, as communities see where they can improve in each of these categories.

The 5 ‘Es’

ENGINEERING - Physical infrastructure and hardware to support cycling

EDUCATION- Programs that ensure the safety, comfort and convenience of cyclists and fellow road users

ENCOURAGEMENT - Incentives, promotions and opportunities that inspire people and enable them to ride

ENFORCEMENT - Equitable laws and programs that ensure that cyclists and motorists are held accountable

EVALUATION & PLANNING - Processes that demonstrate a commitment to measuring results and planning for the future


Fall 2016 Bicycle Friendly Community Awards

The Fall 2016 application round for BFC awards was Share the Road's largest application round ever, with 15 communities submitting applications.  Five new communities joined the ranks of BFCs in Ontario: Cambridge, Cornwall, Collingwood, Temiskaming Shores and Whitby all received Bronze BFC awards, bringing the total number of BFCs in Ontario 36, representing more than 62% of Ontario's population.  the diversity of the communities awarded this round reflects the way that the conversation about cycling continues to grow and develop all across Ontario. Excitingly, two of the new BFCs in this round, Temiskaming Shores and Collingwood, participated in our BFC Workshops over the past 18 months, and used those workshops to move forward with the BFC application process and some of the initiatives that resulted in better conditions for cycling for their residents. The City of Cambridge joins ts neighbours in Kitchener and Waterloo as BFCs, clearly highlighting the incredible support for cycling currently occuring in Waterloo Region.  The Town of Whitby is making strong investments to connect provincial routes like the Waterfront Trail and the Greenbelt Route to their neighbours in Durham Region, Ajax and Oshawa, both of which are Bronze level BFCs as well. First time applicant The City of Cornwall has an impressive network of trails, and an even more impressive network of support including dozens of stakehlder groups working to make Cornwall a better place to bike. We look forward to working with all of our newly certified BFCs to continue to make cycling safer and more accessible to all of their residents.

The Fall 2016 round of Bicycle Friendly Communities awards will be distributed at the 2017 Ontario Bike Summit. For a Press Release about the most recent awards, click here


Thunder Bay (left) and Toronto (right) receive their BFC Awards at the 2015 Ontario Bike Summit

If you are interested in applying for the BFC program, the next round of applications will close on February 28, 2017. To receive announcements about the deadline without beginning an application, please email to be added to the contact list for all BFC updates. To begin your application, check out the Getting Started page.  If you have would like to log in to the Bicycle Friendly Communities application page, click here to login with an existing account, or click here to set up a new application. Please contact if your community should have any questions. You can also find the Frequently Asked Questions section about the BFC Program HERE.



36 Communities in Ontario are Bicycle Friendly Communities

View Bicycle Friendly Communities - June 2013 in a larger map





The 2016 Bicycle Friendly Communities Yearbook


To view past BFC yearbooks, click here.

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