Bike lovers, get your rides ready. After it was canceled in 2020 over coronavirus safety concerns, the hugely popular Bike the Drive event is scheduled to return on Sunday, Sept. 5.
The massive Labor Day weekend event will shut down Lake Shore Drive from 57th Street to Bryn Mawr Avenue so cyclists have the street all to themselves. The Active Transportation Alliance ordinarily organizes the annual benefit event for the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend. Active Trans says it’s the city’s largest group ride, and it comes amid a pandemic-driven biking boom that’s seen more and more people take to their bikes, both to get around and for pleasure.
“After such a difficult year, this is a great moment for Chicago when so many people can safely experience the utter joy of biking with 20,000+ of their neighbors on Lake Shore Drive,” Active Trans Executive Director Amy Rynell said in a statement.
The full route is 30 miles, but cyclists can make their ride as long or short as they wish. The city will start shutting down Lake Shore Drive to vehicle traffic at 5:30 a.m., and Active Trans recommends starting your ride by 7 a.m. Rolling closures will begin at 9:30 a.m., with vehicle traffic returning to the Drive between 10:30-11 a.m. A festival in Grant Park is also set to run from 8 a.m. until noon.
Registration is open now. Active Trans says it’s working with the city to ensure public health and safety, and plans to issue specific guidance in the weeks leading up to the ride.