Cover up your bikes

Spring is here and with it, bicy­cle sea­son is open. It is time to start think­ing about a bike, or going to get your old one from the bike rack, if you can remem­ber where you parked it last Sep­tem­ber. How­ever, when you get to the bike rack, there might be noth­ing left but the rusty remains of your trust­wor­thy old bicy­cle. This is because all win­ter your bike has been left shel­tered from the unfriendly ele­ments (and lets face it, in this part of the coun­try the ele­ments can be really unfriendly)  with­out a roof to pro­tect it. While walk­ing around cam­pus this week­end I noticed a lot of bikes cov­ered in snow, strongly locked to var­i­ous bike racks around the cam­pus, some of which were sub­ject to minor flood­ing and in the same area where the snow plow pushes the snow.

This pains me as I am sure it does other ded­i­cated cyclists. I am an avid biker. Not only do I use my bike as a great way to get in shape, it is actu­ally my main form of trans­porta­tion. I use it to go to class, to the gym, even to go get gro­ceries. Rid­ing a bike is fun and gives a new sense of per­spec­tive when vis­it­ing places that you would usu­ally go in your car. Besides that, a lot of peo­ple are show­ing their per­son­al­i­ties through fash­ion bikes, fix­ies, com­mut­ing bicy­cles and even exec­u­tive mod­els. For these rea­sons bike sea­son is becom­ing increas­ingly pop­u­lar. Bicy­cles are also envi­ron­men­tally friendly.

There is no such a thing as a long term park­ing area for bikes at UW-Superior. Not even a sim­ple cov­ered park­ing area for the rainy days. Bicy­cles are invest­ments, they need proper main­te­nance, safety and shel­ter. In ret­ri­bu­tion, they pay you back with great exer­cise, good mem­o­ries and amaz­ing trips. The least we can do for our invest­ment is to find a roof and keep it safe for the cold win­ter months. As stated by the Vic­to­ria Trans­port Pol­icy Insti­tute, the per­fect long term park­ing should at least have some weather pro­tec­tion, in the form of a roof. We don’t have any place like that around our cam­pus, but we should try to obtain at least a cov­ered area for the actual bike racks near the Dorm halls.

Pro­fes­sor Ray Rein­ert­sen, HHP-102 Health and well­ness course believes that hav­ing shel­ter for bikes would encour­age peo­ple to ride more, “I would like to see more peo­ple rid­ing bikes. Any­thing that gets peo­ple involved and mov­ing is pos­i­tive for UW-Superior.” Pro­fes­sor Rein­ert­sen also  hopes that maybe the city of Supe­rior can work to moti­vate more peo­ple in to rid­ing bikes. Giv­ing bet­ter places for rid­ing bikes near the school, adding speed bumps, stop signs and bike paths, will con­tribute to cre­ate a safer envi­ron­ment that moti­vates stu­dents to get their bikes and pedal around. He remem­bers  a cam­paign, years ago, to get “pub­lic bicy­cles” for UW-Superior Students.

As well as Pro­fes­sor Rein­ert­sen, other fac­ulty mem­bers also agreed that get­ting bet­ter bicy­cle infra­struc­ture could invite peo­ple to go out­side and rides bikes.Without doubt bikes are a very good way to stay in shape, con­tribute to the envi­ron­ment and have fun. For this rea­son we should at least get a pub­lic area in our school where our bikes can be safe and pro­tected from the weather.

Bike out­side the YU

 

Bikes out­side of Crownhart
Images cour­tesy of Manuel Rodriguez
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