The Surprising Promise of Bicycling in America Book

by Jay Walljasper and Melissa Balmer

In October of 2017 we released the digital report "The Surprising Promise of Bicycling in America." You can download it for free here. Or find excerpts from the book below.  Are you a member of the media? Find our contact details here.

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Update: March 19, 2017

We have a brand new cover of the book (in draft form at right) including Melissa's hand drawn illustrations.

We're currently updating the manuscript and adding two more chapters.

Our goal is to release the book between the end of April and middle of May. The book will be available for both wholesale and retail.   

The book now includes:

I. Bicycling for Everyone

II. The Rise of the Modern Bike Movement

III. A Vision for 21-Century Biking

IV. 13 Reasons Bicycling will Continue

to Grow

  • 1 - Equity & Social Justice
  • 2 - The Rise of Safe Routes to School
  • 3 - The Increase of Women in Bike Advocacy Leadership
  • 4 - Women as Influencers (new!)
  • 5 - Connected Bikeways Networks
  • 6 - Bikeshare
  • 7 - Rising Awareness that Biking is Healthy
  • 8 - Electric Bikes
  • 9 - Biking Fosters Vital Communities
  • 10 - Widening Influence of Grassroots Groups
  • 11 - Curbing Climate Change
  • 12 - Emerging Influence of Bike Planning & Advocacy as Professions
  • 13 - Innovation & the Evolution of Mobility

V. The Bright Future Ahead

Why is This Book Needed?

The bike can be can be a bright hope and part of a smart revolution amidst the daunting challenges we face today: environmental devastation,  social inequity in transportation, economic disinvestment in poor communities, traffic congestion, and an epidemic of Americans who are dangerously inactive. These problems need to be at the table as we discuss our future,  bikes need to be understood as part of the solution. We want this to happen. Don't you?

Can you picture bicycling for everyone as a topic of conversation at TED Global, SXSW, the Aspen Ideas Festival, Wisdom 2.0, the Women of the World summit and more?

We can! This book will tell that story AND help bicycling move into top of mind awareness for important sustainability conversations.

Our Team

Author Jay Walljasper is a writer, speaker and consultant specializing in how to create stronger, greener, friendlier communities. His books include The Great Neighborhood book: A Do-It-Yourself Guide to Placemaking and America’s Walking Renaissance.  A long-time journalist, he was editor of Utne Reader magazine for many years (during which it was nominated three times for a National Magazine Award for General Excellence) and a contributing editor of National Geographic Traveler, focusing on sustainable cities.  Learn more at

Melissa Balmer is the Founder/Editor of, focusing on thought leadership and storytelling tools to grow more active, sustainable, mindful mobility. As the former Media Director of the California Bicycle Coalition, and a media relations specialist, she has placed her clients and the Pedal Love team in media outlets such as the Associated Press, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Public Radio International's "Living on Earth," Reuters, Sierra Club Magazine and more

The Pedal Love Culture & Lifestyle Council was launched in 2016 as the first of its kind leadership and storytelling lab, a growing network of female leaders in biking advocacy, bikes for sustainability, and bicycle entrepreneurship across the U.S. Read about the growing list of women here:

Help Make the Book Happen!

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Ebook Love $15

  • You'll be thanked in the book
  • The ebook will be sent to the recipient of your choice in April
Donate $15 Now
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Ebook Love 2 - $30

  • You'll be thanked in the book
  • We'll email you our 20-page hand illustrated coloring pages pdf NOW
  • The ebook will be sent in April
  • Click here to see all of the coloring book pages
Donate $30 Now


Journal Love 1 - $50

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  • You'll be thanked in the book
  • You'll be sent our pocket journal w/6 cover + 3 title choices
  • You'll be sent the ebook in April
Donate $50 Now

Excerpts from the Book!

Looking for a different level of support to give? Send Melissa a note. It can be arranged!