Bike BloNo’s mission is promoting the bicycle for everyday transportation in Bloomington-Normal. That’s why, when we were starting to have conversations with Ride Illinois and the Town of Normal about this year’s Illinois Bike Summit, we decided to produce a video showing people who ride bikes for transportation.
We know there are people who think of bikes as a purely recreational activity – and that’s fine! But the reason we’re working on getting more safe bike infrastructure around town is that we see them as more than just a fun thing to do on a Saturday. To us, they’re a means of economic empowerment for people who can’t drive (or afford) a car; they’re one option people can choose to reduce their carbon footprint and reliance on foreign oil; they’re a choice for people who don’t have time to go to the gym every day but still want to stay in shape, even if the only way they can exercise is on their commute to work. And we’re lucky to have an awesome backbone to get around town with the Constitution Trail, but the Trail can’t go everywhere. So we need safe, comfortable options for people to get from the trailhead to their destinations, or bikes just won’t be a viable option for a lot of people.
So when we partnered with Ride Illinois and the Town of Normal to produce this video, we wanted to ask people from all walks of life (a) why they ride a bike, and (b) what would make their rides better?