Calgary, located in the province of Alberta, is the third-largest city in Canada. The city is known as an economic center of the energy, financial services, film and television, tourism, technology, and retail industries.
If you’re interested in visiting Calgary and exploring it via e-bike, this article will answer any questions you may have, and will help you plan your trip!
E-biking rules in Calgary
In Calgary, e-bikes are legal everywhere that traditional bicycles are allowed! This means that e-bike riders must obey traffic and road laws accordingly. You can learn more about Calgary’s cycling laws, signage, and road markings on the city’s website here.
In Alberta, e-bikes are referred to as “power bicycles”. Here are the province’s rules on what classifies as an e-bike:
- Vehicle must not have a motor output exceeding 500W
- Cannot travel faster than 32 km/h (20 mph)
- Fully operable pedals are required
- Riders must be 12 years of age or older
- All riders are required to wear a helmet
When it comes to taking your e-bike on public transit, there are a few things to keep in mind. Public transit in Calgary is called the Calgary Transit, and this service includes trains and buses.
The train is known as the CTrain, and most CTrain stations have bike racks where visitors can secure their bikes to. On weekdays, due to busy rush hour traffic and crowds, bikes are not allowed on trains between 6:30 – 9AM and 3 – 6PM. However, outside of those times (including weekends and holidays), there are no restrictions, and cyclists are allowed to bring their bikes onto the train.
On buses, bike racks located at the front of the vehicle are fitted to many buses, specifically to buses operating on routes 1, 9, 14, 20, 38, 43, Max Orange, and Max Teal. While folding bikes are allowed to be carried inside the bus (as long as they are folded), all other bikes must be placed on the bike racks. There are only two bike racks on the front of the bus, and these are available on a first-come-first-served basis. If the racks are full, riders must wait for the next bus.
Lastly, 14 of the Calgary Transit’s stations include bike lockers that can be rented for a minimum of six months and a maximum of one year. Learn more about bikes on the Calgary Transit system here!
Is Calgary e-bike friendly?
Yes, Calgary is extremely e-bike friendly! With various bike lanes, cycle tracks, and parks throughout the city, riders will have many options when planning their routes. Bikeway maps can be purchased at the stores listed on this webpage, and you can also visit Bikemap to find online maps and filter through road bikes, mountain bikes, and city bike routes. For more information on cycling infrastructure in Calgary, visit the city’s webpage here.
If you are interested in taking an e-bike tour while visiting Calgary, Bowcycle E-bikes offers guided bike tours, and MJM E-bikes offers one-hour long “Copper Tours”, where riders will be taken through Calgary’s most scenic bike paths along the Bow River!
For charging your e-bike, there are currently no e-bike specific charging maps. However, Chargehub offers an interactive map of Calgary’s electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, where e-bikes may also be compatible.
Bike parking is also available throughout the city. You can find Calgary’s “Park & Bike” online map here. Additionally, visitors who are planning to stay in Calgary for a longer-term period can consider monthly bicycle parking, which is available for $10 CAD (not including taxes) per month. This will allow you to park in one of the city’s secure and enclosed locations. Secured bicycle parking locations are also equipped with a bicycle repair stand and tools that can be used for free. Learn more about monthly bike parking here!
How is the weather and city traffic in Calgary? Is it fun to ride an e-bike in Calgary?
Cyclists who are visiting Calgary should keep in mind that rush hour runs between 3:30 – 5:30PM on weekdays. Fridays may experience lighter traffic as some workplaces are given Fridays off. In general, however, we recommend cycling the roads anytime before 2PM or after 7PM.
The best time of year to visit Calgary is June through August. This is when the weather is warmest and the city’s special events – such as the Calgary Stampede festival – take place!
This is also the highest traffic time for tourism, as many come to the city for hiking, cycling, fishing, and other summer activities, so be sure to book accommodations in advance. Temperatures range between the 60s and 70s Fahrenheit (15 to 25 degrees Celsius), and rain is frequent during this time, so don’t forget to bring waterproof gear with you!
Spring months are a time when temperatures average in the 50s and 60s Fahrenheit (10 to 20 degrees Celsius), and maybe an ideal time to visit if you are looking to spend less money on accommodations. Bear in mind that some parks and trails may be muddy, though, as snow is still melting during this time.
Autumn months see similar temperatures and accommodation prices. Be sure to pack extra layers and warm clothes! We recommend avoiding visiting during the winter months (November through March), as this is when the temperatures are lowest and snowfall hits, making for less-than-ideal cycling conditions.
When visiting Calgary, be sure to check out the many sites the city has to offer! Heritage Park Historical Village, The Calgary Zoo, Bow River, Prince Island’s Park, Calgary Tower, Wonderland Sculpture, Studio Bell, and Fish Creek Provincial Park are just a few top spots to visit.
Calgary city landscape, the best type(s) of e-bikes to ride in this city
The city of Calgary is comprised of many landscapes, such as cityscape, prairies, valleys, forests, wetlands, and mountains. Because of this diverse range of flat and hilly regions, the type of e-bike you get is entirely dependent on the routes you are planning to take!
If you are planning to traverse paved and flat routes, a city cruiser or commuter e-bike will be suitable. However, if you are planning to traverse regions with hills, mountains, or valleys, we highly recommend an eMTB (electric mountain bike) or hybrid e-bike.
Where can I buy an e-bike in Calgary?
There are a number of places where you can buy your e-bike in Calgary! Bike Bros is a brick-and-mortar store in Calgary where you can browse their e-bikes online or visit them in person, as is Bow Cycle E-bikes.
Where can I repair an e-bike in Calgary?
There are a few options where you can repair your e-bike in Calgary.
Bicycle Repair Hub offers e-bike repair services ranging from complete multi-speed or single speeds, bike assembly, and more. Power in Motion offers repairs as well, but those with e-bikes will need to contact the company directly and ask if certain services will be possible.
Lastly, Velofix – Calgary is a mobile bike service that comes to you when contacted. The company is available to come to your place of work, house, or cycling focused event to help service and repair your bike.
Where can I recycle e-bike batteries in Calgary?
If you are looking to recycle your e-bike battery, there are a number of places to choose from. Ridley’s Cycle, The Bike Shop – South, Ridley’s Cycle Westhills, and Pedalhead Bicycle Works are a few options listed on the Liv Cycling webpage.
You may also be able to recycle your battery at Best Buy, Home Depot, Ikea, Lowes, MEC, Staples, The Source, RONA, and Princess Auto locations in Calgary. For more information, visit Calgary’s Battery Recycling webpage here. And if in any doubt, contact Call2Recycle, Canada’s largest battery recycling program, to find out where you can drop off your battery!
Calgary city programs to develop cycling infrastructure
As a city that is working hard to become more bike-friendly through more on-street bikeways, Calgary has a Cycling Strategy in place (more information can be found here). Funding for these bikeways come from the One Calgary Service Plan and Budget.
Through this program, the city hopes to add bike infrastructure and improve bike safety, functionality, and accessibility, in order to encourage cycling as a more utilized form of transportation.
Read also: Check out Canada’s best travel destinations by electric bike in this overview article.
We hope you enjoy your trip to Calgary! Happy riding!