It’s that time of year again! June is Bike Month, as the signs remind us, and to kick off bike month, communities around BC join to promote cycling to work with Bike to Work Week. This year, Bike to Work Week runs May 28 – June 1.
Bike to Work Week is the perfect opportunity for everyone to try riding to work. The weather is just starting to turn around, setting the stage for a gorgeous summer of cycling. Thousands of cyclists in Vancouver already do this daily, benefiting from the low cost, the exercise, and the environmentalism of riding to work.
Bike to Work Week Origins
Bike to Work Week in BC started in 1995 in Victoria. In 2005, a province-wide pilot project was launched and almost 1,200 cyclists in 18 communities registered and participated. 2007 saw the first full Bike to Work Week push, and just over 11,000 cyclists participated in Greater Victoria, the Fraser Valley and Metro Vancouver. Last year, over 8,000 adults in Metro Vancouver and over 15,000 cyclists province-wide registered and participated in Bike to Work Week.
Bike to Work Week in Metro Vancouver is coordinated by HUB: Your Cycling Connection (formerly the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition). By signing up on the official Bike to Work Week website and logging your commutes, you will be able to keep track of your kilometres cycled as well as your estimated greenhouse gas emission reduction. You can join a team of cyclists at your workplace and by logging your commutes, both you and your team become eligible to win a number of daily prizes.
Kitsilano Commuter Celebration Stations
In addition to the stats and prizes, over 50 commuter “celebration” stations will be setup throughout the week along cycling routes across the region. The number of commuter stations in Kitsilano has been increased this year. On Monday June 28th between 6:30 am and 9:00 am at Cornwall and Chestnut, near the south end of the Burrard Bridge, the City of Vancouver sponsors a commuter station, with free refreshments by Ethical Bean, and free bike mechanic service by local bike shop Dizzy Cycles.
On Tuesday through Friday, a commuter station will be set up on the corner of 7th Ave and Arbutus, on the Off-Broadway bike route. Sugoi will be sponsoring the station on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday (7am-9am) providing free refreshments and bike service. On Thursday the City of Vancouver takes over (6:30am-9am), with CoV Transportation staff on hand, refreshments by Ethical Bean, and mechanic service by CAPS Westpoint Cycles.
To aid you in planning your bike ride to work, you can use the UBC bike trip planner, which lets you find a safe route, sorted by shortest path, least hilly, least vehicle pollution, or most vegetated. OpenFile Vancouver has a great OpenRoad project tool that will let you review bicycle-vehicle collision data along a route. And HUB has The Metro Vancouver Cyclists Handbook (pdf) to provide some basic information on riding your bicycle in Vancouver.
Are you participating in Bike to Work Week this year?