More people taking on bike challenge

Kate Robichaud, of the University of Otago School of Physical Education, is one of many in the department taking part in the Aotearoa Bike Challenge this month. Photo: Gregor Richardson
Kate Robichaud, of the University of Otago School of Physical Education, is one of many in the department taking part in the Aotearoa Bike Challenge this month. Photo: Gregor Richardson
An increasing number of Otago residents are getting ''two-tyred'' for their daily trips to work this month.

Staff at nearly 100 businesses and organisations in the region have signed up for the Aotearoa Bike Challenge which encourages New Zealanders to make everyday trips by bike during February and, at the same time, have a chance to win more than $11,000 worth of prizes.

More than 500 Otago and West Coast residents have already signed up to the challenge, notching up more than 28,000km and 2317 bike trips so far.

They are among more than 17,000 people nationwide taking part in the event.

NZ Transport Agency system design acting senior manager Kevin Reid said it was the third year the challenge had been held, and more people had participated in the first two weeks of this year's event, than in the whole of last year's challenge.

''Over 17,000 people across the country have logged a ride, over 2millionkm have already been cycled, and there's still two weeks left to go.

''We're excited with the number of New Zealanders that are getting on their bikes for the challenge this year.

''It's great to see that organisations throughout New Zealand have embraced not only the challenge, but cycling in general.''

The next step for cyclists was to turn their efforts in the challenge into lasting habits, Mr Reid said.

The challenge ends on February 28, but organisations can still register to participate.

john.lewis@odt.co.nz

Comments

If we were generous and estimated 75% of all these people are in Dunedin, then during this special challenge time the most we can see is 375 people riding bikes for work, shopping, whatever journeys.
About $15 million to $30 million has been spent to date on bike ways in and around Dunedin. Real numbers are difficult to track because DCC likes to hide costs in different buckets masking the total spend.
And this is ignoring $20 mill plus for Pt Chalmers and god knows how much for Caversham and Wingatui tunnels and connections.
For 375 total users, many of whom won't even be riding every day. Just where is the justification to keep spending?