PROVO- The Provo mayor wants more people to ride their bikes to work.
Advocates like the Provo Bicycle Collective take abandoned bikes and fix them up, making it cheap and easy for people to trade their gasoline-powered vehicles for leg powered two-wheelers.
“We make bikes accessible to people; we make them cheap. There’s a lot of people that just can’t afford a bicycle,” said Austin Taylor, Director of Provo Bicycle Collective.
They said providing cheap bikes is a way to implement new bicycle-friendly policies that will make a difference in Provo.
“We’ve developed the bicycle master plan which outlines a series of interconnected bike trails, and we’ve made bike paths. We’ve made a lot of progress,” said Dave Sewell, Provo City Chair.
New implementations aren’t the only thing increasing the amount of bicycle riders in the community. In addition to health benefits, financial and environmental advantages are causing more people to ditch their cars.
“There’s health benefits, of course, from the exercise and any time you travel by bike. That’s one less car trip, one less gasoline output of smog, and it’s also financially efficient,” Sewell said.
“I honestly think it makes people friendlier,” said local bicyclist Jared Hanse. “I mean, you see people riding around and you don’t really say hi to someone that is driving by. I guess you can wave, but if someone’s riding around with a bike, you can stop and say hi to someone and make new friends.”
The city council hopes the combination of new riding paths, inexpensive bikes and a desire to reduce pollution will make Provo a bicycle-friendly community.