BizCycle will help businesses improve their bike-friendly ratings and will highlight the workplaces around the city that go above and beyond.
The percentage of bike commuters in Seattle alone increased by 22% from 2009 to 2010, according to US Census data. This increase can be seen during the morning rush hour as swarms of people riding bikes exit the Bainbridge Island ferry, crest the hill on Dexter Avenue into downtown, and huff it to and from suburban communities.
What’s causing the increase? Most Seattle-area workers spend their days indoors and—whether they’re making lattes behind a coffee counter or writing code at a desk—many commuters report that they simply enjoy spending a fraction of their day outdoors rather than on a bus or in a car. The waist-slimming health benefits motivate some, others enjoy the ease of parking a bike rather than a car, and the cost of gas gets some people on their bikes. A less cited—but significant—reason for the increase in cycle commuting is also due to a growing number of Puget Sound employers, large and small, who are going the extra mile to support and promote two-wheeled commuting.
Cascade Bicycle Club has just announced the launch of BizCycle–a certification and recognition program for Puget Sound businesses who offer top-notch facilities and support for bike-commuters. Cascade was inspired to create BizCycle by the recent popularity of green building certification programs and the growing demand to differentiate between truly bike-friendly corporate practices and bikewashing. Cascade engaged in research and focus groups during the planning stages of BizCycle to create a set of criteria defining a bike-friendly workplace.
Businesses seeking BizCycle certification can earn up to 50 credits for activities in five different focus areas ranging from infrastructure to leadership. There are basic prerequisites applicants must meet, however BizCycle aims to reward the diversity of ways a workplace can support cycling. Providing showers may not be possible for every employer, but credits are available for a range of other activities—from fostering a bicycle-friendly corporate culture to providing urban cycling classes to advocating for improved cycling infrastructure beyond the wall of the office.
Think your workplace deserves BizCycle certification? Let your workplace know about the program! BizCycle is now receiving applications and the first ten people who refer their employer to BizCycle will be eligible for either a free entry to Cascade’s RSVP ride or a free Ortlib pannier. Spread the word (and make sure your employer enters your name here so you get the free stuff).