05/22/2013 11:02 EDT | Updated 07/22/2013 05:12 EDT

Bike To Work Week Vancouver Begins May 27


It's time to make use of those bike lanes, Vancouver - Bike to Work Week starts May 27.

For one week, Metro Vancouver commuters are being challenged by a volunteer-run organization to ditch their cars for bicycles from May 27 to June 2.

Cyclists - new and seasoned - are encouraged to register on the program's official website to access the "Commute Tracker" tool that will help map routes and keep track of an individual or team's progress.

"Commuter stations" will also be set up throughout Metro Vancouver, handing out hot coffee, free food, and tune-up help to cyclists.

The benefits of swapping cars for bikes speak for themselves, say organizers. They point to financial savings - highlighting the average cost to own and maintain a car is $7,400 per year - and mass reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.

Started in 2007 by Hub, a Vancouver-based non-profit that promotes cycling, the event has picked up popularity and sponsors like the City of Vancouver, B.C. government, and local credit union Vancity in recent years.

At the end of the week, organizers plan to throw a party to celebrate active living. On the menu: burgers, including the healthy veggie kind.

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