This morning, I rode my bike from the downtown Tempe area to downtown Phoenix along Washington Street. Up through 24th Street, Washington is a pleasant and fast way to travel, but after 24th bicyclists face disappearing/reappearing bike lanes and bone-rattling, uneven pavement. On the other hand, the route is fairly short (just over 10 miles).

This experience, and numerous other discussions got me wondering: what are your preferred East-West routes?

There’s Oak Street, of course, which is low in traffic but which lengthens the ride considerably.

A regular commuter mentioned riding along Van Buren up until 36th street, then turning north and then riding along Roosevelt the rest of the way, which I’ve found pretty pleasant.

There’s always the Grand Canal, although parts of it appeared to be under construction, and southern sections are tricky to find.

What do you think?

8 Responses to “Favorite East-West routes to Phoenix?”
  1. ben says:

    A regular commuter mentioned riding along Van Buren up until 36th street, then turning north and then riding along Roosevelt the rest of the way, which I’ve found pretty pleasant.
    +1

  2. ben says:

    really you don’t want to know what I think. So that is where I ride. or close to it.

  3. Kate says:

    For people looking for a more southern route, Roeser Road is a pretty nice ride. Alameda turns into Roeser around 44th Street or so. Unfortunately, you still need to take Southern west under the freeway, but can head north immediately after that until you hit Alameda/Roeser (1/2 mile or so). The road itself isn’t in the best condition, but it’s wide w/slow traffic – consider it Oak’s southern sibling.

  4. ben says:

    Also the Western canal which is north of Baseline.
    Which heads east and west from Laveen too Gilbert.

    7th street is a bike lane
    Central is a shoulder from what I can tell.

  5. Rebecca says:

    I haven’t checked out the Western canal yet, but I should do so one of these days.

    Yes, Central is a shoulder. Before the light-rail construction, traffic wasn’t very heavy on Central, and the road was quite wide, so riding in traffic on Central didn’t feel too dangerous to me. In the time when it’s been restricted to one lane, it has been more stressful to ride on (broken pavement, car-jams behind me, cars passing too close). I haven’t noticed the bike lane on 7th street, but parts of 12th street are pretty nice, and 3rd Ave. is much better–almost pleasant!

    Thanks for the further input!

  6. Ogre says:

    From Tempe, jump onto the Grand Canal bank just west of the Marquee Theater and follow west under Priest Drive, Loop 202, past the Light Rail Maintenance Yard, under the SR 143 where you can continue along the Grand Canal towards WAshington and Van Buren or veer left along the south side of the Railroad tracks where it is a little rough, but traffic free, follow the tracks to 40th Street where you can jump onto Air Lane about 1/10th of a mile south that has a nice wide bike lane and minimal traffic, or continue along the tracks to 24th street. I continue riding west under I-10 and make a right (north)on 20th Street. About 1/10th of a mile make a left (west) onto Jackson Street which has light traffic and goes under 16th Street and 7th Street where you end up at Chase Field and can choose your destination from there. This is a nice route to avoid traffic and very few traffic signals for continuous joyful riding.

  7. Tom says:

    Ogre, can you slap that route on MapMyRide and share it with us?

  8. benny says:

    tempe to phx

    the cross-cut canal from the northside of mill ave bridge connects seamlessly with the arizona canal to many points in PHX. the ride along AZ canal is relaxing with many underpasses that avoid arterial crossings. connect from dwntwn tempe to biltmore and sunnyslope among other places.

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