Biking is a great way to get around Seattle. In fact, the Seattle Department of Transportation estimates that approximately 36% of Seattle's 520,000 citizens engage in recreational bicycling, and between 4,000 and 8,000 people bicycle commute in Seattle each day (http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/bikeprogram.htm). According to an article in Bicycling, Seattle is ranked 4th out of America’s Top 50 Bike Friendly Cities. Seattle currently has “about 45 miles of shared use paths, 120 miles of on-street, striped bike lanes and sharrows, and about 120 miles of signed bike routes.” (Seattle Department of Transportation, http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/bikeprogram.htm). Seattle is also working on a Bicycle Master Plan (scheduled to be completed in 2016) that aims to increase bike usage and access and decrease the number of bike accidents.
But, no matter how many bike lanes there may be, if you don’t have the information and skills you need, biking in the city can feel intimidating. Do I ride with the traffic or next to it? What if there isn’t a bike lane? How do I clearly let cars know when I intend to turn? If you’re like me and find this all a little daunting, then the Urban Cycling Techniques course at the PNA, in partnership with the Cascade Bicycle Club, may be what you’ve been looking for.
Through this course, recreational or transportational cyclists will gain the knowledge to make informed decisions while riding in traffic and the confidence to balance caution, assertiveness and the skills necessary for safer urban riding. The course is just in time to help you prepare for Bike Month (May 2011), when over 10,000 people participate in the Group Health Commute Challenge. This class will give you the skills you need to start commuting next month.
The evening lecture session (on Wednesday, April 27th, 6-9pm) will be followed by an on-your-bike practice session—bring a working bike and proper helmet to the Saturday (April 30th, 10am-3pm) session.
To register call 206.783.2244. This course costs $80 for PNA members and $85 for the public. So register today and gain the information and practice you need to be a safe and confidence urban cyclist, just in time for spring!