Bicycle Basics

The University of Michigan (U-M) promotes bicycling as a sustainable means of transportation for faculty, staff and students. Bicycling provides an excellent, inexpensive and time efficient way to get around and between the various U-M Ann Arbor campuses as well as to other destinations in the City of Ann Arbor (City). Cyclists have a great deal of route options with an ever growing network of bike lanes and offroad pathways in the City. Also, many of the roads on and around campus are low volume and low speed roadways where bicycles and motorists may easily share the road.

Bicycle Friendly University Silver Seal

In March of 2012, The University of Michigan was named a Bike Friendly University (BFU) by the League of American Bicyclists. In November 2015, U-M received a silver designation and is one of the few campuses nationwide to receive the designation of a BFU.

There are a lot of reasons that U-M's faculty, staff and students choose to bike. They include:

  • More flexibility than U-M and AAATA bus routes offer
  • A way to incorporate physical activity into daily activities
  • Free and convenient parking!
  • Less environmental impact than driving a car or taking a bus
  • A more pleasant way to get around
  • A lot less expensive and a lot less hassle than owning a car

Bicycles also work with other alternative transportation options. The AAATA's buses all have bike racks on them. Also, zipcars are located around campus for those times you really need a car; and U-M students, faculty and staff can join at a discounted rate.

Several bicycle amenities, funded by Planet Blue Student Innovation Funding (PBSIF), have been installed to provide the infrastructure to support increased biking on campus. They include two public air pump stations (at North Quad and Pierpont Commons) and a "fix it" station near the Central Campus Transit Center, where cyclists can access available tools for quick repairs.

Cyclists are encouraged to travel in the roadway whenever practical to minimize conflicts with pedestrians on sidewalks and for their own safety. Sidewalk cycling is discouraged, as it can be very dangerous. Sidewalk cyclists are often out of the field of vision of motorists pulling into and out of side streets and driveways. This is especially the case when cycling on the sidewalk in the opposite direction of traffic in the adjacent lane. The Bicycling Guides and Ann Arbor bike map highlight commonly biked roadways.

When bicycling in the roadway, cyclists must generally follow all of the same rules of the road as motorists. The Bicycle Safety Guide highlights key laws and bicycling techniques. When bicycling on walkways cyclists should slow down and yield to pedestrians. Please note that bicycles must be walked in certain areas of campus such as through the West Hall arch and the arch at Randall Laboratory.

U-M Shower Facilities

Staff showers are available for bicyclists at five campus locations. MHealthy provides a list of the shower locations on their website. The information is listed towards the bottom of the page.