There are many resources available to support cyclists on campus and in the community. From bicycle-friendly cafes, to trails, to repair stations and more, we’ll share a list of resources to get you started on your cycling journey in Waterloo Region.
The University has plenty of resources available to make sure you are a safe cyclist both on and off campus. While things may not be operating normally right now, many of these resources are still available to you or are good to know about for when normal programming resumes.
- UW Bike Centre: This student-run bike shop is located in the lower level of the Student Life Centre and seeks to provide sustainable and affordable commuting options for students. The Bike Centre is now open, but visits are by appointment only for the spring term. In addition to basic bike repair support, the Bike Centre also offers repair workshops, an annual bike auction, and more.
- UW bike locker program: Available to rent for staff, faculty and graduate students are bike lockers at $10 per month with locations across campus. This short-term rental program is great if you plan on cycling only during the warmer months of the term and don’t enjoy hauling your bike around campus with you. The program is managed by Parking Services.
- (Coming soon) Secure bike cage: A student-friendly bike storage centre located outside of Environment 3 and Modern Languages, the bike cage can hold up to 48 bikes for $10 per month. This highly anticipated infrastructure will soon be complete and ready to accept registrations. The program will be managed by Parking Services.
- TravelWise platform: Available to students and employees on campus, this free platform helps you plan your trip and compare different trip options, track your trips over time, and more. Students can join the University of Waterloo student network and employees can join the University of Waterloo employee network.
Other resources and information from UW:
- Tips for locking your bike on and off campus, provided by UW Police.
- Use the interactive campus map to find bike locker and repair station locations across campus.
- Laurel Trail runs through campus on the east side, parallel to the ION tracks. This eight kilometer bicycle-friendly trail connects you to Northfield, uptown Waterloo, downtown Kitchener and more! It’s a great route if you live south of campus, need to do a grocery run, explore the park, or want to visit a local coffee shop.
In the community
Beyond campus, there are many helpful resources available to students and community members alike. In 2014, the Region created their Active Transportation Master Plan to set goals and objectives for making Waterloo Region a more walkable and bikeable community to live, work, and play in. As such, there are many free and affordable resources available to promote sustainable commutes.
- BikeWR: The “one-stop shop” for all things bike-related in Waterloo Region. For information on where to buy or repair bikes locally, what cycling events are happening, safety tips and more, be sure to use this resource!
- Waterloo Region bike route map: This comprehensive map shares all the routes in the Region, where you can find Bike Boxes, Sharrows, and more. It also provides information on proper hand signaling and helmet usage.
- Waterloo Region trail list: The Region provides a list of all the different cycling-friendly trails across Waterloo, Kitchener, Cambridge, and more.
- Bicycle-friendly businesses in WR: A list of bicycle-friendly businesses in the Region, mainly focused on cafes, restaurants and hotels with contact information for each business.
- Ontario by Bike: A site with information on cycling-friendly communities, restaurants, hotels and more. Check out the resources highlighted in Waterloo Region by searching our local community, or use the search engine and interactive map to explore communities across Ontario. Also make sure to check out their 2020 guide, which highlights cycling activities in Waterloo on page 21!
- Cycling in traffic rules: Ziggy’s Cycle & Sport in Kitchener has put together a helpful list of rules to follow when cycling on the road to protect yourself, drivers and everyone else around you.
Those are just some of the resources available to you as a cyclist. There are many smaller-scale ways that the campus and community promote cycling, from cyclist traffic lights, to park benches with built-in bike rests, to cyclist counters and more.
Let’s recap what we have learned this past month. You are now knowledgeable on the benefits of cycling, how to be a safe cyclist and the resources available to you in Waterloo to be a sustainable commuter. Every small action you take to promote sustainability does make a difference, including choosing to ride your bike. If everyone does their part and takes at least one action every day to promote a sustainable lifestyle, we can collectively transform our world.
If you have questions about cycling within the city/on campus, any feedback or additional resources for cyclists that you would like to share, feel free to email the Sustainability Office at firstname.lastname@example.org