At just over a year into the project, we're proud to have over 30 different businesses on board to reward you for pedaling around Omaha!
The concept is simple: ride your bike and be rewarded. So, we've been harassing local businesses and encouraging them to support the cycling community in Omaha and the response has been an overwhelming "Yes!" There really are no hard and fast rules to how they support cycling; the only issue we're really pushing for is bike parking, and the rest is up to them. Slowly but surely our "Bicycle Friendly Destination" decals are popping up around town on the doors of businesses that want to show their support for people getting around on bikes. Whether they have outdoor seating, free air (for your tires silly), discounts, or have just agreed not to laugh at helmet hair and Lycra, these businesses are partnering with Omaha Bikes to get more folks out riding and we love them for it. Check out a quick informative piece created by a UNO student here.
The goal of "Bicycle Friendly Destinations" is to get average people and families out on their bicycles, which not only creates a vibrant street life, but helps our environment and the health of our community. Business owners are often required to create more parking for their patrons which can be costly, and take away from their bottom lines. So, by riding bicycles to their establishments, we are freeing up parking spaces for their driving customers, helping clean up the air, and having fun in the process. Everybody wins!
How can you get involved with the project, you ask?! Well, it's simple really. Say you ride your bike to a restaurant, bar, coffee shop, book store, neighborhood market, etc. and have noticed that they are pretty darn bike friendly. The next step is explaining the program to them along with the benefits... "$5.00 gets them a decal for their door and then they can decide what type of discount they would like to offer, if any (a lot of places are doing a 10% discount if you ride in), and what else they think would classify them as a Bicycle Friendly Destination." Then, email Omaha Bikes (OmahaBikes@gmail.com) with the contact information for that business and we'll do the rest. We will list them on our website and try to steer business their way. Bike shops around town are also encouraged to put the list of "Bicycle Friendly Destinations" in their "New Bike Packets" so that every new bike customer in town will be informed of the program. We're also creating a map of all the Bicycle Friendly Destinations that you can get to from the Omaha Bikes website so that it will be easy to see where they all are. Also, if you know of a generally bike friendly place that doesn't have bike parking, let us know. We're working with the City to help place a few more racks around town that remain from a grant we received recently for bike parking. What we hope to get back from these Bicycle Friendly Destinations (aside from discounts and the like) is support when we need it from an advocacy standpoint; we want to create a network of businesses around Omaha that truly stand behind all things cycling related and will happily partner with our cycling community when legislation needs to be supported.
View Omaha Bikes:Bike Friendly Destinations in a larger map