NEW YORK CITY – May 2, 2007 – Throughout the month of May, New York City Sports Commissioner Kenneth J. Podziba, acting Transportation Commissioner Judy Bergtraum, Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas R. Frieden and Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe invite New Yorkers and our visitors to participate in the 16th annual Bike Month NYC. Bike Month NYC will provide more than 200 opportunities for people to ride their bikes and explore our city's many diverse neighborhoods. The month will include a wide range of cycling events, highlighted by the Commerce Bank Five Boro Bike Tour, Bike to Shea Day and the Tour de Brooklyn.
Transportation Alternatives has partnered with the Sports Commission, the Department of Transportation (DOT), the Health Department and the Department of Parks & Recreation to create Bike Month NYC. Bike Month NYC was created in an effort to increase bicycle ridership throughout the city by highlighting safe, alternative means of transportation via bicycle lanes and greenways. Riders of all skill levels are welcome to participate in Bike Month's variety of events.
"We are delighted to work with Transportation Alternatives, DOT, the Health Department and the Department of Parks & Recreation in continuing the tradition of Bike Month NYC," said Sports Commissioner Podziba. "Bicycles are a safe, fun and healthy means of transportation, a fact to which more than 120,000 New Yorkers who ride their bikes daily can attest. It is our hope that Bike Month NYC will encourage even more New Yorkers to take advantage of our city's many bike paths and greenways."
May 6, 2007, marks the 30th anniversary of the Commerce Bank Five Boro Bike Tour. Due to an unprecedented response rate, the Tour is full; no new entries are being accepted. If you're one of the 32,000 riders already signed up, you'll enjoy 42 traffic-free miles starting in Lower Manhattan and finishing with a celebratory Festival at Fort Wadsworth in Gateway National Recreation Area on Staten Island. For more information, please visit www.BikeNewYork.org.
"The Five Boro Bike Tour kicks off Bike Month and provides a unique opportunity to bicycle around New York City on car-free roads," said acting DOT Commissioner Judy Bergtraum. "I encourage all New Yorkers to get out and enjoy the biking events taking place across the City this month."
"Obesity is an epidemic nationally and in New York City," said Health Commissioner Frieden. "But changing the balance can be fun. Biking at any pace is a great way to burn calories. It eases noise pollution and traffic congestion—and in a city this dense, it can often be faster than driving."
"New York City's parks and waterfronts are endowed with miles of bicycle paths and thousands of acres to explore," said Parks & Recreation Commissioner Benepe. "As an avid cyclist, I encourage all New Yorkers to take advantage of spring and get some great aerobic exercise by cycling in a local park. Bicycling is a safe, fast and fun way to travel and Bike Month NYC provides the ideal opportunity to explore our city's parks and greenways on two wheels."
"From the Commerce Bank Five Boro Bike Tour on May 6th, to the DOT's Bike to Shea Day on May 12th, to Transportation Alternatives' Tour de Brooklyn on June 3rd, there are over 200 great events during Bike Month NYC for cyclists of all ages and ability levels," said Tour de Brooklyn Coordinator Nora Pena of Transportation Alternatives. "Now is a great time for all New Yorkers to grab their bikes and go for a ride."
Bike to Shea is a ride open to cyclists of all skill levels that will take place on May 12. Marshalls from the Department of Transportation will escort riders to the Mets game via on-street bicycle lanes and Department of Parks & Recreation's off-street greenways. The leisurely ride ends at Shea Stadium where participants can stay and watch the Mets take on the Milwaukee Brewers. Free bike parking will be provided at Shea Stadium. To learn more about Bike to Shea Day, visit http://www.nyc.gov/html/sports/html/bike_to_shea.html.
The Tour de Brooklyn is a free 18-mile escorted ride that travels from Prospect Park to Coney Island and back. The ride includes one rest stop where water and snacks will be provided for participants. For more information on one of Brooklyn's most popular rides, please visit www.tourdebrooklyn.org.
For a complete listing of Bike Month events, please visit www.bikemonthnyc.org.
The mission of the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) (www.nyc.gov/dot) is to provide for the safe, efficient, environmentally responsible movement of people and goods in New York City. To fulfill this mission, DOT controls and regulates traffic; builds and maintains streets, sidewalks, highways, bridges and municipal parking facilities; maintains and operates the Staten Island Ferry; and acts as an advocate and a voice for better transportation.
The Health Department (www.nyc.gov/health), for its part, will distribute event calendars though schools and worksites and will work with DOT and the Parks Department to distribute informational booklets at Teach Your Child to Ride events. The Health Department is also working with Sustainable South Bronx and Recycle-A-Bike to stage a "Greening for Breathing" block party at Hunts Point Park on Saturday, May 12th. Some 100 helmets will be given away at the party, as will some children's bicycles.
Transportation Alternatives (www.transalt.org) is a 5,500 member non-profit organization advocating for better bicycling, walking and sensible transportation.
Parks & Recreation is the steward of almost 29,000 acres of land—14 percent of New York City—including more than 4,000 individual properties ranging from Yankee Stadium and Central Park to community gardens and Greenstreets. We operate more than 800 athletic fields and nearly 1,000 playgrounds; we manage four major stadiums, 550 tennis courts, 51 public pools, 34 recreation centers, 12 nature centers, 13 golf courses, and 14 miles of beaches; we care for 1,200 monuments and 22 historic house museums; we look after 500,000 street trees, and two million more in parks. We are New York City's principal provider of athletic facilities. We are home to free concerts, world-class sports events, and cultural festivals. For more information about Parks, visit our website: www.nyc.gov/parks.
The New York City Sports Commission (www.nyc.gov/sports) is the mayoral agency charged with attracting, facilitating and promoting professional, amateur and scholastic sports events in New York City. In recent years, the Sports Commission has played a role in creating or developing many new sporting events, including the NFL Kickoff Live from Times Square, NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Champions Week, the BMC Software NYC Cycling Championship, the AVP Brooklyn Open, the NAUTICA NYC Triathlon, the NYC Half-Marathon, the Union Square Street Sessions presented by Jeep, the Wild Onion Urban Adventure Race and the Men's Health Urbanathlon.