Gas prices force motorists to drive less, ride mopeds

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Gas prices force motorists to drive less, ride mopeds

Postby Micronaut » Wed Oct 12, 2005 5:09 pm

Michael Hernandez
Staff Writer
September 27, 2005

Students are looking at other means of getting to and from school, including walking, bicycles, buses, skateboarding and mopeds.

Michael Nolan, San Antonio sophomore, will not be behind the wheel of a car anytime soon.

“I don’t drive now because of gas,” he said. ... 8e49c1c17e
Students all over campus are stuffing their keys in their pockets and dusting off their old bikes because of high gas prices.

That is what Jaye Harris, Plano senior, did. She dug through her aunt’s garage and found an old bicycle and made it her own.

“It probably was something in 1982,” she said, looking down at the faded blue bike. It is missing a kickstand, but it still gets her to and from school.

Sabrina Arney, El Paso junior, purchased her Twist and Go moped in August.

The blue moped is a flashback to mod styles of the ‘60s, with a streak of white down the middle of the vehicle’s body.

“At the time I bought this, gas was $3 and I thought [the moped] would be perfect,” she said. “I didn’t want to fill up a tank to go only a few miles like in a car.”

She said her moped seemed like the best mode of transportation for her because she does not leave Denton often. Plus, she only pays $14 a month for insurance.

The moped “is still street legal,” Arney said. “I couldn’t cruise down Bonnie Brae on a skateboard.”

Students rely more on their bikes to get around. Jonathan Grubbs, Denton junior, makes a conscious effort to ride his bike more instead of driving all over town.

Riding his Greenbriar Free Spirit bike “really cuts the costs of driving to school everyday,” Grubbs said.

Melissa Dunning, Roanoke, Va., junior, carpools with friends when she needs to pick up a few items from Wal-Mart.

“I really watch how much I drive now,” she said.

Enthusiasm for bikes has helped reignite the bike business for local shop owners.

Denton Bicycle has had steady business since spring, said Joe Holland, the store’s owner.

Typically when a summer season has consistently hot days, the bicycle business suffers, Holland said, but that’s not the case this year.

Holland has difficulty explaining why business has been so good, he said.

“I wish I knew the answer [to why business has increased], I’d bottle and save it,” Holland said.

Mark Steck, owner of Bike-O-Rama, is more confident explaining the reason for bike sales: gas prices, he said. Bike-O-Rama’s repair business has tripled since gas prices have started rising, he said.

Steck has also seen a rise in new bike sells, but not as much as bicycle repair.

“It costs too much for student to drive six times around campus looking for a parking space,” Steck said.
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