Let’s talk about motivation. What drives you to ride your bike or walk? Why on earth — especially during these sodden, cold winter days — do you commute via bike or feet over a warm, dry car?
A little housekeeping first: when used in the same sentence as bikes, commute has many definitions. Most people associate commute with work. But work isn’t the only destination for a commute. What about school? or play, activities, errands, appointments, or even to run kids here and there? Maddie, for example, is a bike commuter in our eyes. And for the purpose of this article, if you use a bike to “get around” (say, any use not strictly for sport), then you are a bike commuter too. This article mostly refers to “bikes.” But if your needs are better met by mentally substituting “walk” or “scoot” or “multi-modal” instead of “bike” as you read this post, you have our blessing.
This discussion is not new, our bike tribe has been talking about this topic for years. Back in 2008, Kent Peterson did some posts: why do you bike commute? / Why don’t you bike commute?“
You’ve heard of first world problems, right? Most people who live in the world’s wealthiest nations have abundant choices. One of those is the option to choose our mode of transportation. To get from point A to B, we can drive or walk or take the bus or use a bike, a scooter or a unicycle, or even hire a town car. Us first-worlders are blessed (cursed?) with commute options. Continue reading
Thanks, Jorge, for sending us this video!
The entire Car Free Days family enjoyed watching this whimsical video that’s a refreshing reminder of the fun involved in leaving our cars at home on occasion!
Happy Bike-to-School-And-Work-Day tomorrow!
Posted in alternative transportation, bigger than here, bikes, Commute, Events, extravehicular activities, In other Cities
Tagged 2012, alternative transportation, Alternative Transportation Project, Argentina, ATP, Buenos Aries
Tim and I have a difference of opinion when it comes to Bromptons.
When he rides the Brompton, Tim forgoes toting around a heavy U lock and frequently chooses to take the bike with him when he arrives at his destination. In a shopping cart, in the corner of a restaurant or in a waiting room at the doctor’s office, Tim’s choice is usually to tote and stash the bike. Continue reading
I’m a little behind on my blog / RSS reading (like 6-9 months, oops) so maybe this one has been all over the Inter-Webs. But even if it has, I don’t care. I love it and I’m posting it here anyway.
Nate Byerley, CEO of Xtracycle, spent some time filming his daughter Davis and their commute to school on a PeaPod (child seat) -equipped Xtracycle. The result is the perfect video to share with anyone who wonders why children should be transported by bike.
Watch and then answer me this: Have you ever seen such joy (“I see a kitty! … Scream with me!”) from ANY child strapped into a video screen-equipped mini van or SUV?
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Bikes are better!
Posted in bigger than here, bikes, Commute, kids, xtracycle
Tagged car-free, Commute, happy, joy, kids, peapod, xtracycle
It was raining so hard when I got up Wed. morning I didn’t ride my bike to work.
Don’t worry, I still got there on the Xtracycle, but like most days, I found it made more sense to take my time getting underway.
My morning (many mornings, in truth) went something like this: I got up. It was raining. Had my Grapenuts and coffee with the kids. Raining. Helped them get ready. Raining. Said goodbye to the kids. Still raining. Shower? Yep, still raining.
Yet 10 minutes later I was on my way to work dressed in my normal (non-bike) clothes, rain gear safely stowed in the Xtracycle Freeloader. Rain-gear optional is a a pretty usual way for me to roll (and maybe the reason I can still justify owning my hideously ugly purple/pink/black, 18 (!) year-old REI Turismo jacket/pants
I’m not saying all this to sound like a total time-challenged-douche-bag-schedule-slouching-weather-rock-star or something—though if you got soaked yesterday you might think I sound like one of those. Nah, I just want to share my two simple tools (well, three if you count the merino wool and four if you count fenders, but everyone knows that one, right?) for staying dry this winter. Continue reading
Columbia City station on Seattle's Link light rail from rutlo on Flickr
Sound Transit is launching it’s starter light-rail line from Westlake Center to Tukwila tomorrow.
Today’s Seattle Times reports that some would-be light rail riders are upset by the lack of parking around the light rail stations. According to Rick Sheridan, SDOT spokesman, this was done on purpose.
“Light rail was meant to be fed by people taking the bus, walking or biking,” said Rick Sheridan, spokesman for the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT). “It was not meant to be fed by cars.”
Sounds like a great opportunity to promote cycling. One mile is a doable bike ride for most people. Let’s hope people get inspired to give cycling a try since they won’t have any place to park their cars. Go ahead, buy a beater bike and ride it to the light rail station.
Does anyone know if they put in adequate bike parking?
I’d love to hear from some South end readers about what you think of this topic. The Times has 329 comments at this time, so it looks like a hot one.
I love commuting with my wife
Friday is a big day.
We kick off Bike to Work month (Tim) and Bike to School month (Anne and the kids). I’m pretty sure we’ll be blessed with clear (or at least dry) skies, so don’t delay the start of your commute season. Remember, this is Seattle—the weather can only get worse as we get closer to June.
If you find yourself downtown with a spare hour around lunch time, I’d recommend checking out the Forum, TOWN HALL: Visioning the Puget Sound Region’s Transportation Future. It’s part of their ongoing Friday Forums series:
Transit demand continues to skyrocket while operating revenues are plummeting. How do car sharing, walkable and bike-friendly communities, and transit work together to form a new vision for transportation?
You’re even bring your lunch so if your schedule can swing it—unfortunately, mine can’t— please share any good takeaways. From over here in the cheap seats, it looks like an interesting collection of speakers will be covering some major ground.
WHEN:Friday, May 1st, 12:00 – 1:30 PM
WHERE: Bertha Landes Knight Room, Seattle City Hall (on 5th Ave.between Cherry and James St.)
More info at the Transportation Choices Coalition website.
Posted in alternative transportation, bigger than here, Commute
Tagged bike-to-school, bike-to-work, bikes, bluesky, Commute, oma, seattle, transportation, weather
Day: The only stretch of ice on the whole commute
Night: University Bridge: Glare Ice on the Bike Path
To my friends at Seattle DOT,
If, by chance, you happen to read this little blog before heading out Tuesday morning, I’d first like to mention how much me and my bike commuting buddies appreciate the great job you did clearing the University Bridge deck Monday morning. It was cold but you were out there working it.
With that out of the way, do you mind if I ask a small favor? Is there any chance that you could pretty-please finish the North and South approaches to the deck? It’s very slippery, especially at night.
I know it may not seem like there are many riders out right now, but you’d be surprised: I think more than a few of us would benefit from such an effort.
Keep up the good work!
PS: I used your online contact form to report this issue, but it said I’d hear a response in 10 days. I figure it will be 55 F and raining by then, so this venue will have to do.
Posted in bicycle neglect, bigger than here, bikes, Commute, kids, seattle, streetsblog, weather
Tagged ice, seattle, streetsblog, traffic, weather
Anne's Oma with generator hub is always ready for dark
I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but my evening commute has quickly slipped into darkness. My inherent laziness means I never took the lights off my Xtracycle but unfortunately it’s looking like few of the city’s bike commuters are on the same legacy lighting program. Continue reading
This is sweet. The volume of commuters is almost like something you’d see in Northern Europe. The video author says the state ferry system is thinking of bumping cars in favor of bikes because bikes generate more revenue per square foot of deck space. Makes sense to me—six or eight paying cyclists in the space of normally occupied by a lone driver is easy math.
Wasn’t it just last year they were saying passenger/bike ferries weren’t an economical option ? I guess they didn’t anticipate the impact of $125/barrel oil on the hearts and minds of SOV ferry commuters.
via Greggscycles Plurk (-stream? -line? -uh…what is a plurk feed called?)