Biking & Walking
Biking or walking to work is not just a healthy choice for commuting—it’s free! The added exercise gives you time to collect your thoughts and feel energized for your workday. You can also find a bike commuter to join you using our myCommuteSolutions tool.
Less Stress Commuting
Improve Air Quality
Route Selection is key to feeling safe on your ride to work. The safest and most enjoyable route for you to take on your bike is probably not the route you would use when driving your car. Generally, avoid streets on busy bus routes. Playing leapfrog with a bus is not only irritating but potentially unsafe. Alleys make bad shortcuts, known for poor surface conditions and unpleasant odors. And drivers are not looking for a bicycle to come out of an alley on to the street.
The Austin Bicycle Map is a great tool for route selection because the streets are color-coded based on factors like traffic volume, availability of shoulders or bike lanes, and incline. Other bicycle commuters are also a great resource. Ask people for their suggestions!
Visibility is about wearing reflective clothing, using those blinking lights, and positioning yourself while you’re riding to increase the probability that drivers will see you. At intersections, stop behind a car where you can see the driver’s face in the driver's side mirror. In addition to ensuring that the driver can see you, that position also makes you visible to cars on the opposite side of the intersection who might otherwise not see you before starting a left turn through the intersection.
Following the rules of the road will possibly have the greatest impact on your overall safety. If you don’t already know the Texas bicycle laws, please take the time to learn them before you start riding in traffic. Several local organizations provide traffic cycling skills courses and resources to refresh your knowledge of road rules.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Yield to vehicles on the roadway if you cross the street at a place other than a marked crosswalk or pedestrian tunnel or crossing. If you’re hit while jaywalking, the driver may not be liable and his or her auto insurance may not cover your injuries.
- Stay on sidewalks and the right-hand side of crosswalks. Drivers are supposed to yield the right-of-way to pedestrians in crosswalks.
- If the road has no sidewalk, walk on the left side of the road, facing traffic.
- Always cross at intersections. Look left, then right, then left again before proceeding.
- Look for traffic when stepping off a bus or from behind parked cars.
- As a passenger, get in or out of a car on the curb side of the street.
- Make eye contact with drivers before you cross the street.
Tools & Resources
Our matching and trip-planning tool, myCommuteSolutions, has an easy tracking system through the commute calendar. This tool is free to both individuals and businesses and enables users to track:
- cost savings
- calories burned
- fuel saved
- pollution reduction.
To connect with potential bike buddies, log on to myCommuteSolutions.com and create a profile to use the free matching service.
- Learn about the types of bikes and equipment you might need at REI’s bicycle guide.
- Discover the places that are “just a short walk” from home or work at Walk Score. The tool is also great for exploring the neighborhood and places to visit. Some savvy car-free transit riders use the site to simplify errands by choosing the routes and stops that allow them to walk to the greatest number of tasks.
News & Media
- Are You Ready to Rock (The Car-Free Festival Experience)? September 27, 2019
- Car2Go is backing out of Austin as crippling mobility issues continue September 23, 2019
- The Small-City Vision Zero Challenge September 23, 2019