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Bike Fair aims to encourage biking, safety

Rewa Marathe, a Graduate Student Association representative, adjusts the brakes on a bike at GSA’s second annual Bike Fair yesterday on the College Avenue campus. – Photo by Paul Solin

Looking to educate students on the benefits and logistics of biking around campus, the Graduate Student Association organized its second annual Bike Fair yesterday on the College Avenue campus.

“We’re here to create awareness and tell others of the bike facilities, bike safety rules and biking advantages,” said Aimee Jefferson, an Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy senior.

Jasmine Eaton, a School of Arts and Sciences first-year student, was one of the regular bikers in attendance. She said she loves riding her bike from campus to campus.

“I don’t really ever have to worry about getting on a crowded bus,” Eaton said.

Many of the flyers available at the Bike Fair were targeted toward students to promote the environmental benefits biking provides.

“It’s a good exercise and doesn’t use any petrol so I’m never worried about harming the environment,” Eaton said. “There’s only advantages to riding a bike around here so I highly recommend it.”

Many intrigued students who never rode a bike on campus stopped by the fair. Fadila Noor, a School of Arts and Sciences senior, was interested in biking around campus.

“I’d like to ride my bike around campus my last year here just to see what it’s like,” Noor said. “But I live on Douglass, and I don’t really see many bike routes there, you basically have to share the same road with cars. It’s easier on Livingston and Busch.”

The University held the bike fair on Earth Day and invited the New Brunswick Bike Exchange to create awareness about getting directly involved.

“The New Brunswick Bike exchange just started last year. What they do is take donated bikes that may be old and used and fix them and sell them for cheap prices,” said Brian Stromberg, an Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy graduate student.

Lea Stuff, a board member for the Graduate Student Association, was one of the volunteers at the event. She said she bikes to and from her home and found it easy to get from one campus to another on her bike.

“It causes less traffic congestion. It’s a good exercise. Most of all, it makes you happy. I bike to and from home, and it’s quite easy just getting from one campus to another on your bike,” said Stuff, a student at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy.

The fair informed students about easing the transition into biking around the New Brunswick and Piscataway campuses, Jefferson said. They were informed of the routes they could take and the safety signs that were put up for bikers.

“It’s very easy to ride your bike from one campus to another,” Stromberg said. “It’s possible, and I’ve done it so I urge others to do it as well. Plus the weather is nice now so more people should be biking around campus to get from one place to another.”

The Bike Fair advocated the convenience of riding a bike and explained environmental benefits. Noor said she would be happy to ride her bike around campus, especially considering the environmental benefits.

“People don’t realize how much carbon dioxide and other fuels cars, buses and trains use and that they are so harmful to the environment,” Eaton said. “If you ride your bike around, you’re that one less person causing problems for the environment.”

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