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Beat the Traffic: A new record for METRO bike boardings

by Katherine Whaley / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on May 31, 2011 at 7:48 AM

Updated Tuesday, May 31 at 2:42 PM

HOUSTON -- If you are looking to save money on gas, you might want to take a cue from the thousands of commuters in Houston who have found a new way to travel from point A to point B.  METRO is encouraging bikers to use the bus system to make it easier for them to commute long distances to work. 

For Charlene Lewis her daily commute to her office downtown includes a bike ride and a bus trip.  Lewis explained the benefits of using Metro's bike boarding program.  "Jump on it, it's for health fitness, and save a little gas," she said.  She is part of a growing number of commuters using Metro buses or light rail to help them ride to work.  "I see a lot on the train because I do the train a lot but you have seen the buses and the count has grown tremendously," she said. 

In fact, there were 10,155 bike-boardings on buses in March, a one-month record since the service launched in 2007.  Plus, boardings have increased two-fold from just two years ago.  In April 2011, there were 9,863 boardings, compared to 5,003 in April of 2009.  With a city as large as Houston, for many folks, biking to work without buses just wouldn't be possible.

"There are going to be some pockets in some areas where people really would like to use public transit, but would like to be a little bit closer to a bus stop or rail line, and for many of these folks, they'd like to be able to ride their bikes to those bus stops," Jerome Gray, METRO Senior Press Officer, told KHOU 11 News. 

Bikers are able to board their bikes onto the light rail trains, and they load the bike on the front of the buses.  "It's actually pretty simple, and they have it where you lay the traction down, it's two clips, it's one in the front, one in the back, and you get in, you just want to make sure it's secure," Lewis explained.

Lewis hopes Metro's bike program will continue to grow, because she believes biking to the bus stop could help you go the distance, and beat the traffic.

 

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