Author Topic: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.  (Read 4007 times)

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Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« on: August 03, 2013, 03:09:21 PM »
I know there's another thread about biking at night, but I wanted one that's more reflective of my route. Here's a crime map of the area that I have to pass through. https://www.crimereports.com/map?search=64108 I work the night so I'd have to be riding between 9:30 PM to 11:00PM (google says it'd take me about 75 minutes to ride about 12 miles. Anyways I'm pretty much terrified of the idea of going through that area on a bike at night. Even by car, it's windows up, doors locked, and foot on the pedal and not stopping for anyone approaching. It isn't really that bad since it's fairly desolate (for a reason, there's shootings sometimes and was gang territory about a decade or two ago) and there are homeless with lots of stop lights where I'd be stopped if I was going by bike that I'm afraid of. I can't bike on the highway like I drive to get around it either :S. Does anyone have any tips on how to make the trip safer, aside from not making it by bike?

I found this 1980s Schwinn Traveler III Road Bike on craigslist for $40 that I'm tempted to pick up to commute with, I currently have a mountain bike to bike with in free time. I don't travel distances so I don't mind the mountain bike's lack of speed. If I can't make the commute, should I pick up the road bike anyways, seems like it's a decent price but if I never use it, I don't need it.

PS: I know logically, I most likely would be fine but I can't help be terrified of the idea. Is there someone with a similar route that can put me at ease? I mean it isn't the "worst" part of town, it's just a close 2nd in my mind... I'm not trying to troll either, not on purpose, maybe looking for a face punch telling me to not even consider the idea, or to tell me I should have been making the trip all this time
« Last Edit: August 03, 2013, 03:13:07 PM by eyem »

MoneyLifeandMore

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2013, 03:38:06 PM »
Honestly, if the area is that bad I'd put safety of my own life over saving money from driving a car. I'd rather be alive and have less money then be shot and have saved some money.

DougStache

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2013, 03:41:52 PM »
How much distance would you have to add to your route to avoid the unsafe area?

MichaelR

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2013, 03:58:24 PM »
It would be crazy to bike if it terrifys you. Biking is for health and fun, not just money.

I often bike after nightfall now (6miles), but would not do it in a high crime area.

If i lived close to such an area i would consider moving. You of course will have your own reasons for living there.

Left

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2013, 10:45:45 PM »
it isn't the money that I'm trying to save, more the fact that I would have liked too.
I don't live near there, but the area is between myself and work :S and moving isn't likely currently.
I don't think there is a way around the area by bike, the river pretty much makes it where there's only one bridge that is bike friendly

but i guess I'll go with my gut and what you guys suggest and keep driving. The highway is kept up well and work is right off it so it's an easy drive. But like I said above, only one bridge has a bike route going across it which makes it harder on bike

edit: now that I got some sleep, I was probably delusional about wanting to ride a bike to work, thread can be locked :D I've made my decision to ride in my free time and not to commute
« Last Edit: August 04, 2013, 08:12:11 AM by eyem »

oldtoyota

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2013, 07:18:56 AM »
I started a similar thread a few months ago to say why I would not bike. A guy got beat up on the trail For No Reason. If someone got beat up and their wallet got stolen, that's terrible...at least there is a reason and one could dream you could just throw money at the robbers and be on your way. If the beating is just for fun, then there is no stopping sociopaths like that.

I would not do it.


mpbaker22

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2013, 08:07:54 AM »
Honestly, how bad is the area?  I've biked down North Grand in St. Louis (for those who are familiar) at dusk, and it's not nearly as dangerous as people think.


However, I think people are just generally more careless.  I think you're more likely to get hit by a car than to be beat up.  Also, the ghetto areas tend to have a higher amount of broken glass on the right side of the road, forcing you into the lane, pitting traffic against you.

Those are my concerns when cycling through ghettos, YMMV.

MakingSenseofCents

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2013, 08:21:01 AM »
If you are afraid for your safety, then I probably wouldn't do it, but maybe that's just me. My SO used to take his moped to work and had to ride through the ghetto (his work was around 20 miles from where we lived), and the driving through the bad neighborhood was the easiest/quickest way to work. He stopped taking the moped when he had a gun put to his head at a stoplight...

GuitarStv

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2013, 04:48:29 PM »
I tend to think that you're less of a target on a bike than in a car.  You already look like you're poor because you're on a bike . . . and many people go for bike rides without any cash on them.  If you look at the crime on that map, the bulk of it is simple theft (theft from a vehicle, theft of a vehicle, break and enter, etc.).  Most violent crime around here tends to take place late at night and in the wee hours of the morning, so you would probably be safer if you're commuting more in the daytime.  I'd be inclined to try it out once or twice, it might be better than you expect. . .

BTW, google maps is garbage predicting cycle times.  I biked to work today (11.1 hilly miles of traffic each way) and it took me 41 minutes from my door to work.

theSchmett

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Re: Help with deciding if I should bike to work.
« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2013, 02:56:49 PM »
If you have to ask...