Free Breakfast for ‘Bike to Work Week’

Annual event arrives as campus surpasses 1,000 registered bike commuters

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This picture of David Bradway was taken in 2008, when he first tried biking to work while living in Seattle. He took racing lessons on a bike track and has since become a daily bike commuter in Durham. Photo courtesy of David Bradway.

As the Duke community prepares to mark Bike to Work Week, there’s another reason to celebrate the alternative commuting method, too.

Duke now has 1,014 part and full-time registered bike commuters, an increase of 172 students and employees from the same time last year. Even better, Duke estimates all campus bike commuters – registered or not – stands at about 3,500.

This growth reflects a national trend that has seen a 62 percent increase in bicycle commuting since 2000, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Bicycle commuting is the fastest growing commuting mode in the past decade.

In recent years, the League of American Bicyclists has recognized Duke and Durham as a Bicycle Friendly University and Community, respectively. The awards are presented to campuses, cities and towns that promote and provide a bicycle-friendly atmosphere.

This week, all Duke faculty and staff are encouraged to give biking to work a try and are invited to a breakfast and commuter course on campus to recognize bike commuters and those who want to learn about riding to campus and around Duke.

“It’s something that can have enormous financial and health benefits,” said David Bradway, a research scientist in the Biomedical Engineering Department who started riding a bike to campus last summer. “I like getting the activity in each day and arriving to work alert, awake and ready to tackle the day’s activities.”

Bike Appreciation Breakfast, 8 to 10 a.m. May 15

Duke Parking and Transportation Services and Sustainable Duke are co-sponsoring an event to thank campus bike commuters for committing to alternative transportation. A continental breakfast will be served on the Bryan Center Plaza where visitors can chat with other bicyclists and Duke staff about sustainable commuting and Duke's Bicycle Commuter Benefits program, which offers discounts at local businesses. Prize giveaways will also take place.

Basic Bike Commuter Course, 1 to 4 p.m., May 16 

Alison Carpenter, manager for Duke's transportation demand management program, will help lead a basic bike commuter course open to all Duke community members. The class will be held in Rubenstein Hall room 142 and offers tips and tricks for biking to campus. Carpenter is a certified bike instructor by the League of American Bicyclists.

Topics will include what biking gear to buy, how to dress appropriate for riding and basic bike repair. Participants will also go on a riding tour of campus and the surrounding streets to learn how to best plan a bike commute, so Duke community members will need to have a bike and helmet with them to join. Those interested can RSVP by emailing Carpenter at alison.carpenter@duke.edu

“The growth and interest in biking as an alternative to driving alone to campus is very encouraging,” Carpenter said. “Transportation is such a big part of Duke’s efforts to go carbon neutral and we want to make it as easy as possible for people to make that change.” 

In addition to events at Duke, GoTriangle will host a variety of programs in Durham and across the Triangle. See a full calendar here.