An odd tale of friendship, business, the Internet, and the city of Detroit.
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I am from downriver area, and now I live in Japan. I bike a lot here, I don't usually drive to work at all and I am very comfortable on my bike. I was thinking about moving back and I want to still ride my bike, because I love the feeling, but riding in the suburbs scares the hell out of me. I rode last time I went home and when I had to cross a main road people sped up to try to hit me it seemed. It is good to hear that the buses have bike racks, I was thinking about that. With all the highways and busier roads that are there I think it would be easier in some cases to take a bus with my bike in the rack. Good article, I would like to hear more about the daily and what you do to keep your bike from being stolen. Is that an issue there as I would assume?
Cheers! I also moved here last may and have refused to own a car. It's saved me so much money it's ridiculous. I am also lucky enough, however, to live in Woodbridge (ie. a short bike ride from everything I need in midtown), a 15 minute bike ride from my place of work. One thing you don't address is riding in winter, which is a major issue with some debate regarding how to do so most safely and comfortably. It might be nice to see a follow up post about this. When I told people I wasn't going to buy a car for winter they often reacted with shock. I decided that I was not going to make car payments if it killed me (which it almost did when I was hit by a car while biking in October and, in what must have been a 100,000 to one chance, walked away with no debilitating or immediate injuries). Native detroiters told me not owning a car in the winter would be "impossible." Howevere, I found it fine as long as I layered up correctly (including having multiple layers of gloves and socks), had a second bike with studded snow tires (a $120 investment but a lot cheaper than owning a car), and had friends available to help me out when/if I got in a pickle and my bike broke down (though I am sure I could have called a taxi the one time this happened and thrown my bike in the trunk).Detroit is an incredible city for a cyclist--it's very flat and rideable and easy to navigate. Drivers aren't very used to you being on the road but you just gotta be safe and make sure you're as visible as possible at all times (I found one of the most helpful things in addition to the usual suite of lights is Tire Sparks, motion-activated lights that go on your tire's air valve cap and look incredibly distinctive when your wheels are spinning). Detroit cyclists represent!