By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – On Friday, May 18, Oklahoma City will celebrate its 13th annual Bike to Work Day. Those who bike to work are invited to meet at the Myriad Botanical Gardens for complimentary coffee and breakfast provided by Junction Coffee, courtesy of the Downtown OKC Partnership from 7:15 – 9 a.m.
National Bike to Work Week 2018 is recognized from May 14–18.
There will be several free giveaways and discounts in downtown Oklahoma City celebrating the event.
Participating businesses such as Cultivar Mexican Kitchen, 714 N Broadway Avenue, will offer all bikers a 10 percent discount. Clarity Coffee, 431 W Main Street, will offer free espresso or americano to anyone who bikes to the shop that day.
Mention Bike to work when you check out at Schlegel Bicycles, at 900 N Broadway Avenue to receive discounts of 15 percent off service labor, tires and tubes. Offer valid May 1 – 8.
Several businesses in downtown and Midtown Oklahoma City are also offering discounts and other incentives for cyclists during the lunch hour.
“It’s exciting to see the popularity and momentum of Bike to Work Day continue to build, and it’s inspiring how many people, businesses and organizations want to improve opportunities for people to ride their bikes,” said Planning Director Aubrey McDermid. “This type of community support and collaboration is critical to advancing our goal of creating a safer and easier environment for people to ride bikes for both recreation and transportation.”
Partners sponsoring the 13th year of Oklahoma City’s participation in National Bike to Work Day events include the City of Oklahoma City, the Downtown OKC Partnership and the Oklahoma Department of Transportation.
The increased interest in biking in Oklahoma still did not keep pace with the national movement as Oklahoma came in #46 in the 2017 Bike Friendly State ranking.
To make commuting on a bicycle easier, Oklahoma City has received a grant from the Federal Highway Administration. The grant will be used to launch a pedestrian bicycle safety campaign called Watch for Me OKC and to install new bicycle infrastructure downtown.
The Oklahoma City Planning Commission recently adopted bikewalkokc, the City’s first bicycle-pedestrian master plan. It will be presented to the City Council for concurrent adoption at the end of May. The plan proposes several bicycle facility projects, some of which are already funded as part of the bond package included in the Better Streets, Safer City program.
According to a press release, other bikewalkokc projects are likely to be considered for funding by the temporary sales tax package included in Better Streets, Safer City.
Celebrated in communities across America, May is National Bike Month, sponsored by the League of American Bicyclist. Established in 1956, National Bike Month is a chance to spotlight the many benefits of bicycling — and encourage more people to give biking a try.
The National Household Travel Survey showed that the number of trips made by bicycle in the U.S. has more than doubled from 1.7 billion in 2001 to 4 billion in 2009.
For more information, visit okc.gov/biketowork.