Why Iga Rides

Here’s the latest portrait in Streetsblog’s weekly “Why I Ride” series.

Iga Bicycle Portrait

Photo copyright Dmitry Gudkov

Iga is a 15-year resident of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, and she’s been biking around New York for about that long. She says she’s not a bike commuter but likes to go on long rides for pleasure. “Sometimes I ride to Coney Island, or to the Rockaways.” When she’s staying closer to home, one of her favorite rides takes her into Long Island City, Queens and then on to Roosevelt Island. Iga’s love of cycling began back in her native Poland: “I was in a cycling club. We rode to Czechoslovakia, to Germany. I had a different kind of bike, of course. Here, I don’t really have any friends who ride bikes. I wish they did. Many of my friends don’t think it’s safe, especially at our age. They’re afraid of having an accident, breaking something.” Fortunately Iga has never had an accident and, aside from the occasional honking, she finds most New York drivers to be very respectful.

In 15 years of biking in New York, the biggest change she has experienced is the increase in bike lanes. She says they make her feel more safe, and help her discover new parts of the city. “They are great. Last weekend I rode to the Brooklyn Museum for the first time – in a bike lane the whole way.”