Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In

Party Conventions May Be Bike-Friendly After All

10:39 AM EDT on August 21, 2008


A couple of weeks ago, as part of the "Bike Unfriendly Place of the Week" series at Streetsblog Los Angeles, I took a look at the bike planning at the Democratic National Convention. Local press reports were dire, noting that bike racks near the Pepsi Center in Denver would be closed down as part of the Secret Service's security perimeter. However, after thinking it over, I realized I may have had a "can't see the forest for the trees" moment; after all the advocacy group Bikes Belong has arranged for a free bike-share program for each host city during the convention. Instead of focusing on the negative, I could have looked at how the bike-share program will work around the Secret Service's security concerns.

Upon closer review, it appears that bikes will integrate with the convention pretty well. Thanks to the efforts of Bikes Belong and the openness of the DNC, the 1,000 free rental bikes will have plenty of places to safely park throughout Downtown Denver and near the convention center. The bike rack at the transit hub across the street referenced in press reports will be supplemented by a temporary bike shelter holding roughly 250 bikes. In total, there will be eight temporary racks around the city. Two of them will hold 250 bikes and another six will hold 100 bikes each. As for access to Obama's big speech at Invesco Field, details are still being worked out.

Bikes Belong hopes that all participants in the convention take advantage of the free bike sharing program, be they delegates, elected officials or even nominees. Bikes will also be available to any local wishing to try a little two-wheeled travel while the convention is in town. Avery Stonich, Bikes Belong communications director, sums up the feelings of the bike community in Denver: "People will remember that bikes were a part of this year's conventions long after we forget where the security lines were drawn."

In short, it's a bummer the Secret Service is blocking off the Pepsi Center's bike racks, but overall this could be the most bike-friendly political convention ever. That is, if it's not topped by the Republican National Convention next month in Minneapolis, where, according to Stonich, similar efforts are underway to make bikes a part of the event.

Photo: Damien Newton

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Wednesday’s Headlines: Another Big Day at City Hall Edition

Today is going to be another busy day for the livable streets crowd. So get ready with today's headlines.

December 6, 2023

Reporter’s Notebook: Will Eric Adams Ever Publicly Embrace Congestion Pricing?

The governor, the head of the MTA and the city's leading transit thinkers all celebrated congestion pricing on Tuesday as an historic moment while Mayor Adams spent Tuesday failing to live up to it.

December 6, 2023

Tuesday’s Headlines: Gridlock Alert — And Gridlock Abort — Day Edition

A "Gridlock Alert" day is a perfect day for supporters of congestion pricing to rally in Union Square! Plus other news.

December 5, 2023

‘Crazy Nonsense’: City Now Allows (Cough) Plateless Vehicles to (Cough) Break Idling Law

City environmental protection officials are now refusing to punish owners of commercial vehicles for idling if the trucks don't have license plates — a move that has enraged citizen enforcers.

December 5, 2023
See all posts