Wenny’s Bicycle Commute

December 3, 2010 at 2:44 pm Leave a comment

Merywen “Wenny” Wigley has been commuting by bicycle since 1997.  Currently her 10 mile commute from her home in Duke Park includes the American Tobacco Trail, where she is greeted by foxes and birds along the way.  Her enjoyable commute is not a matter of luck, because when she moved to the area she brought her bicycle and took the American Tobacco Trail into Durham and kept bicycling until she found her house. Wenny spoke with me about how this commute saves her time, money, and keeps her fit.

How does bicycling to RTP save time?  Well, it takes Wenny about 35-40 minutes to bicycle; whereas, if she drove NC-147 it would only take 15-20 minutes.  However, Wenny responds that “overall, if you look at my day, I save time because I do not have to go to the gym.”  In fact, the National Academies’ Institute of Medicine recommends 60 minutes of exercise every day.  To maintain this level of fitness, driving would take 40 extra minutes out of her day!

In addition to saving time, a book called How to Live Well Without a Car by Chris Ballash helped expose Wenny to the hidden expenses of owning a car.  Currently she and her husband own two cars, but she says that at any given time “one of our cars is in the driveway.”  After the holidays they are planning on doing a trial run to only use one car.  Getting rid of a car would save them registration, taxes, insurance, inspection and more every year.

Wenny goes out of her way to help others overcome the barriers to bicycling.  She started a bike email listserv at her office where if someone wants to bike to work they email the group to find someone to ride with them.  She also successfully petitioned the staff advisory committee to get a bigger bike rack that now holds 12 bikes.  Wenny is also the local coordinator for Bikes for the World.

If you are interested in trying a bicycle commute to RTP contact robin@cleanenergydurham.org to be connected with Wenny.


Entry filed under: Transportation.

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