Bicyclists urged to ‘walk your wheels’ on campus


An ISU student heads home on her bike after a meeting in Kildee Hall. The Ames Bicycle Coalition is celebrating Bike to Work Week from May 11 to 15, and Friday is Bike to Work Day.

Alex Cory

With a crowded campus filled to the brim with both pedestrians and bicyclists on the go, it can be hard for everybody to share the available space. Fortunately, there are steps both bicyclists and pedestrians can take to stay safe on campus.

To help avoid any potential collisions, Iowa State Student Government is pushing for cyclists to not ride their bikes on sidewalks.

“We are trying to encourage students to ride their bikes on the road,” said Dan Breitbarth, Student Government president.

Breitbarth said the biggest thing he would urge bicyclist to do is to “ride your bikes anywhere but on the sidewalks.”

While keeping bicycles off of sidewalks is hard to enforce, Breitbarth said he hopes students will spread the initiative through word of mouth, which, to him, is the best form of public relations there is.

Student Government even created a YouTube video for ISU students called “Walk your Wheels” that encourages students to do just that.

Breitbarth said that since bicyclists have more flexibility than a walking pedestrian, they can use it to make themselves safer on the road by taking their time, letting people cross the street or controlling their speed.

Breitbarth also said that just being aware could also help walking pedestrians stay safer on campus.

“Just like their parents told them, look both ways before crossing the street,” Breitbarth said.

Edward Pszczolkowski, sophomore in mechanical engineering, often rides his bicycle on campus and approves of keeping bicycles off sidewalks.

“I think it’s fantastic, sidewalks are for pedestrians,” Pszczolkowski said in response to the initiative.

He said that he hates seeing people go through stop signs and shared what he does to stay safe on his bike, including yielding to any pedestrians, always wearing a helmet and using hand signals.

Clark Ashland, freshman in pre-business, also approves of keeping bicycles off sidewalks.

“I never hear them coming up from behind,” he said. “I think it would be a lot better if they stayed on the roads, especially.”

Ashland also does what he can to avoid bicycle collisions, he said.

“If I hear them or see them coming, I get out of the way and onto the grass,” Ashland said.