Bicycling magazine once named it the best big city for bicycling in North America. The mayor is an avid cyclist. There is a citywide goal to become the “most bicycle-friendly” in the country by 2015. With 100 miles of bike lanes, 50 miles of off-street trails and 10,000 bike racks (the most in America), Chicago is definitely one bicycle-friendly city.
City officials have compelling reasons to do more. As Mayor Richard M. Daley’s ambitious Bike 2015 plan points out, Chicago motorists lose hours of potentially productive time in traffic, and spend an average of 17 percent of their budgets on transportation costs alone. Additionally, with more than 60 percent of all adults in the city overweight or obese, increased reliance on bicycling to meet transportation needs might help to promote healthier, more active lifestyles for people who don’t have time to exercise.
Bike to Work Week runs from June 12 to June 18. For many who see the traffic of the daily commute as a necessary evil, biking to work can be a viable option depending on how far they have to travel. Not only can biking to and from work melt away the stress of long hours spent stuck in morning traffic, but also it can leave people feeling refreshed and invigorated.