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


Spring 2017 Bicycle Friendly Community Awards

The Spring 2017 application round for BFC awards was an excellent application round, with 4 new communities joining the ranks of BFCs.  Belleville, Brampton, Ingersoll and St. Thomas all received Bronze BFC awards, bringing the total number of BFCs in Ontario 39, representing more than 67% of Ontario's population.  With the certification of the City of Brampton, all 5 of Ontario's largest communities are now BFCs, but the growth in interest in cycling doesn't stop with the big cities.  Small urban centres like Belleville and St. Thomas and rural centres like Ingersoll are showing that cycling brings benefits to communities of all shapes and siszes. The success of our BFC Workshops continue to be highlighted by communities that join the ranks of BFCs, with Belleville hosting a workshop in October of 2015 before becoming a Bronze level BFC this spring.  The workshops help a community to chart a path forward using local experience and expertise, and have proven extremely effective in moving communities forward.

This application round also showcased the power of cycling events and programming for a community as they build towards a more bicycle friendly future.  Both Ingersoll and St. Thomas have done excellent work with their Bike Month efforts and their efforts promoting active transportation to more of their residents, and are now seeing the dividends from those efforts as more residents are getting out on their bikes, creating healthier, happier and more prosperous communities. 

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


Representatives from the Town of Ingersoll Receive their BFC Award at the 2017 Ontario Bike Summit

If you are interested in applying for the BFC program, the next round of applications will close on October 21, 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.



39 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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