D.C. Struggles to Keep Up With Growing Number of Bikers | NBC4 Washington

D.C. Struggles to Keep Up With Growing Number of Bikers



    (Published Tuesday, May 13, 2014)

    Daily biking is growing by as much as 20 percent per year in the District, leaving city workers struggling to keep up with the demand for bike racks.

    The city is keeping up with installation of new racks as fast as its budget allows -- and Capital Bikeshare stations can be found in almost every neighborhood, as Washingtonians trade their car keys and Metro cards for bicycles.

    "It just makes sense; it's better for the environment, better for your body... it's better for everything," one woman said. 

    Not only are Washingtonians using bikes in droves to run errands or exercise, but more and more are using bikes to get to work -- 3.2 percent of commuters use bikes, ranking D.C. within the top 10 of biker-friendly cities.

    "It used to just be the hardcore ones... now you see women in high heels, men in suits going to work [and riding bikes]. It's really transforming the city," Jim Sebastian with the District Department of Transportation said. "It's just a great way to get around and a lot easier than driving your car."

    To help raise the number of bike racks in the city, the Golden Triangle Business District is pitching in by holding contests for artsy bike racks.

    "Our Metro system is packed, our roads are packed... people are starting to walk and live closer to where they work," Leona Agrouridis with Golden Triangle BID told News4.

    According to Downtown D.C. and DDOT, 145 bike racks were installed between 6th and 11th streets just last year, and 175 will be installed between 11th and 16th streets. Downtown DC hopes to have 1,000 bike racks installed in the area by 2015, compared with half that number in 2012.

    The city will be hosting Bike to Work Day Friday, with refreshment and raffle stops scheduled around the metro area.