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‘Bike-n-ride’ Bus Service to Suttons Bay Kicks Off TodayPrint

Thriving Communities | July 1, 2013 | By James Bruckbauer

Northern Michigan’s robust trail network brings with it one challenge: So many bikes, but not enough space on the bus when you need a lift.

So today, and just in time for July Fourth weekend, the Bay Area Transportation Authority launched its new Bike-n-Ride service, which will accommodate more bikes on its fixed-route buses between Traverse City and Suttons Bay.

The service allows cyclists to bike on the popular 15-mile stretch of the Leelanau Trail between Traverse City and Suttons Bay, then return by bus with plenty of room for their bike.

Riders will be charged $3.00 per person for each ride.

The new service, which will run every other hour, is expected to be a big hit among commuters, tourists, and casual cyclists. It’s BATA’s response to a growing market of active individuals and families that enjoy northern Michigan’s recreation trails, scenic beauty, and exciting small towns.

“After paving the Leelanau Trail in 2012, we saw an explosion of cyclists and pedestrians taking advantage of the trail system,” Julie Clark, TART Trails Executive Director said in a press release. “We know from the growing use of our trail system that the need to accommodate these groups of people is there.”

The service uses existing buses that run on regularly scheduled “fixed” routes.

For more details, including service schedule, check out the Bike-n-ride web page.

We'll give it a test ride and review in the next couple weeks.

James Bruckbauer is the Michigan Land Use Institute’s transportation policy specialist. Follow him on Twitter at @jimbruckb. Reach him at james@mlui.org.