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8 places to visit by bike this spring

A (very long) bike tour courtesy of Bike Easy’s executive director, Dan Favre

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Bike riding is “really on a roll in the greater New Orleans area,” according to Bike Easy executive director Dan Favre. In addition to its more than 125 miles of new bike lanes, New Orleans has experienced a 300 percent increase in the number of people riding bikes since the year 2000, as counted by the American Community Survey, Favre says.

New bike infrastructure also is underway in St. Bernard Parish, where the city is extending the Mississippi River Trail, and in Jefferson Parish, where officials have adopted a cross-parish bicycle master plan. In Orleans Parish, Bike Easy’s “Connect the Crescent” project, a three-month test-drive of temporary bikeways, continues through December. City officials will use feedback from the project to inform the construction of new bike infrastructure.

“These (bikeway) options create so many benefits for people of the region, from health and quality of life to job access,” Favre said. “Almost 20 percent of households in New Orleans don’t have access to a motor vehicle, so having an affordable transportation option is really huge.”

Favre bikes from his Marigny home to and from Bike Easy’s Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard office each workday.

“I love arriving at my office with my heart pumping. I feel ready for the day and energized,” Favre says. “Coming home, I get to relax and clear my head.”

Below, find a few of Favre’s favorite bike paths across the city.

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1. French Quarter

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French Quarter
New Orleans, LA

“There’s a bike lane on North Rampart, but I drop into the French Quarter. Biking around the French Quarter is great—streets are calm, and there’s all the great architecture and people out. It’s a wonderful way to interact with that neighborhood.”

2. Baronne Street

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Baronne St
New Orleans, LA

“The move to creating a buffered bike lane on Baronne was good. It didn’t go far enough, but it feels so good having a protected lane. Whether you’re stopping at Mammoth for an espresso or Rouses for groceries, there are so many great places. And you can get up into Central City from Baronne Street.”

3. Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard

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Oretha Castle Haley Blvd
New Orleans, LA 70113

A recent $1.8 million streetscape renovation added bike lanes, new paving, ADA-compliant curbs, and landscaping to O.C. Haley Boulevard, where you’ll find museums, restaurants, and markets.

“Biking to and from Oretha Castle Haley is really fantastic. The Bike Easy office is there as well, so I have a lot of love for the area.”

4. Southern Food and Beverage Museum & Museum of the American Cocktail

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1504 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd
New Orleans, LA 70113
(504) 569-0405
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This nonprofit museum, which features regular cooking demonstrations (with free samples) and an absinthe display, is one of Favre’s favorite spots to stop.

5. Roux Carre

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2000 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd
New Orleans, LA 70113
(504) 875-4293
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Favre recommends stopping here for a bite. Roux Carre is part open-air food court, part culinary incubator. A project of nonprofit Good Work Center, it aims to increase minority and female entrepreneurship in the food and beverage sector. Check the website for current offerings, which include Trinidadian soul food, Honduran food, Creole classic, desserts, and craft beer and cocktails.

6. Butterfly Riverview Park

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6500 Magazine St
New Orleans, LA 70118
(504) 658-3000
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“Heading Uptown, I love going to the Fly at the base of Audubon Park. That’s a fun place to ride bikes to and relax. If you have leg power at that point, grab the Mississippi River levee trail and the Lake Pontchartrain levee trail from there. Another spot that’s fun to bike to is the swings under the Crescent City Connection.” 

7. Algiers Ferry Terminal

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“From there, come back to the French Quarter. I like biking to the Algiers ferry landing. With the Connect the Crescent project, we have great transit protection: a two-way protected cycle track along Canal Street that takes people up to the ferry.”

8. Algiers Mini Mart Flea Market

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2105 Behrman Hwy
New Orleans, LA 70114
(504) 361-1637
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“After I get off the ferry, I love to bike to the Latino market at the end of Behrman Highway. There’s a nice, permanent two-way protected bike lane that connects some apartment buildings to a big shopping complex. Before that, they were pretty isolated, so we’re seeing how bike infrastructure can help people get to the destinations they need. The Algiers Mini Mart Flea Market has tons of different vendors selling flea market stuff from a bunch of plywood shacks. There are lots of amazing tacos and pupusas. It’s a little tricky to bike over there, but it’s worth the effort.”

1. French Quarter

French Quarter, New Orleans, LA

“There’s a bike lane on North Rampart, but I drop into the French Quarter. Biking around the French Quarter is great—streets are calm, and there’s all the great architecture and people out. It’s a wonderful way to interact with that neighborhood.”

French Quarter
New Orleans, LA

2. Baronne Street

Baronne St, New Orleans, LA

“The move to creating a buffered bike lane on Baronne was good. It didn’t go far enough, but it feels so good having a protected lane. Whether you’re stopping at Mammoth for an espresso or Rouses for groceries, there are so many great places. And you can get up into Central City from Baronne Street.”

Baronne St
New Orleans, LA

3. Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard

Oretha Castle Haley Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70113

A recent $1.8 million streetscape renovation added bike lanes, new paving, ADA-compliant curbs, and landscaping to O.C. Haley Boulevard, where you’ll find museums, restaurants, and markets.

“Biking to and from Oretha Castle Haley is really fantastic. The Bike Easy office is there as well, so I have a lot of love for the area.”

Oretha Castle Haley Blvd
New Orleans, LA 70113

4. Southern Food and Beverage Museum & Museum of the American Cocktail

1504 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70113

This nonprofit museum, which features regular cooking demonstrations (with free samples) and an absinthe display, is one of Favre’s favorite spots to stop.

1504 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd
New Orleans, LA 70113

5. Roux Carre

2000 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70113

Favre recommends stopping here for a bite. Roux Carre is part open-air food court, part culinary incubator. A project of nonprofit Good Work Center, it aims to increase minority and female entrepreneurship in the food and beverage sector. Check the website for current offerings, which include Trinidadian soul food, Honduran food, Creole classic, desserts, and craft beer and cocktails.

2000 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd
New Orleans, LA 70113

6. Butterfly Riverview Park

6500 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70118

“Heading Uptown, I love going to the Fly at the base of Audubon Park. That’s a fun place to ride bikes to and relax. If you have leg power at that point, grab the Mississippi River levee trail and the Lake Pontchartrain levee trail from there. Another spot that’s fun to bike to is the swings under the Crescent City Connection.” 

6500 Magazine St
New Orleans, LA 70118

7. Algiers Ferry Terminal

New Orleans, LA 70114

“From there, come back to the French Quarter. I like biking to the Algiers ferry landing. With the Connect the Crescent project, we have great transit protection: a two-way protected cycle track along Canal Street that takes people up to the ferry.”

8. Algiers Mini Mart Flea Market

2105 Behrman Hwy, New Orleans, LA 70114

“After I get off the ferry, I love to bike to the Latino market at the end of Behrman Highway. There’s a nice, permanent two-way protected bike lane that connects some apartment buildings to a big shopping complex. Before that, they were pretty isolated, so we’re seeing how bike infrastructure can help people get to the destinations they need. The Algiers Mini Mart Flea Market has tons of different vendors selling flea market stuff from a bunch of plywood shacks. There are lots of amazing tacos and pupusas. It’s a little tricky to bike over there, but it’s worth the effort.”

2105 Behrman Hwy
New Orleans, LA 70114