Above: a photo gallery from Saturday night’s ride between Union Station and Dodger Stadium. About 80 cyclists participated. Photos by Dave Sotero/Metro.
Here’s the news release from Metro:
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) today announced a partnership with Cyclists Inciting Changes Through Live Exchange (C.I.C.L.E.) to sponsor 20 “Urban Expedition” community-based bicycle rides throughout L.A. County over the next two years.
The ambitious effort kicks off Bike Week L.A., May 13-19, and will continue through Bike Week 2015. Destinations and routes for these group rides are being organized and are intended to introduce new and veteran bicyclists to some of L.A. County’s iconic destinations they might not visit on their own. Metro and C.I.C.L.E. conducted the inaugural ride Saturday, May 11 from L.A. Union Station to Dodger Stadium where bicyclists enjoyed secure bike parking, an exclusive tour and special discounts to see the Dodgers battle the Miami Marlins.
The rides focus on safe bicycling etiquette, rules of the road and basic maintenance. Before each ride, participants are given a “safety workshop” so they learn safe road bicycling along the route and practice proper methods of taking a bike on public transit.
“These rides are for all people from the first-timer to experienced rider,” C.I.C.L.E Executive Director Dan Dabek said. “Each ride is led by a trained guide who will not only point out places of interest, but will instruct riders how to negotiate live traffic lanes and bike paths.”
C.I.C.L.E. helps riders of all ages and skill levels use bicycles for everyday transportation to improve health, build communities and save on the expense of driving a car.
Metro provides valuable information in English and Spanish on its web site www.metro.net/bikes including how to take a bicycle on trains and buses, tips on handling road conditions and safely securing a bicycle in one of the many bike racks and lockers at Metro stations. Futue bicycle ride information will be posted on the web site and at www.facebook.com/BikeMetro.
“About 40 percent of all car trips are one mile or less,” said Lynne Goldsmith, bicycle program manager for Metro. “If we can encourage people to make some of those trips on a bicycle, we are helping to reduce road congestion and improve air quality,” she added.
Metro and C.I.C.L.E. will prepare collectible destination maps for each ride. Rides will take place in neighborhoods troughout L.A. County in which C.I.C.L.E. will collaborate with community partners to advertise and lead group rides.
The rides are the latest effort by Metro to help make L.A. County more bike-friendly. The agency’s bicycle program is facilitating first mile/last mile connections to transit and supporting bicycle transportation through various policies and programs.
Other efforts to improve bicycling safety include Metro’s “Every Lane is a Bike Lane” safety campaign to increase motorists’ awareness of cyclists’ rights to the road. The ads appear on bus backs, billboards, radio, bumper stickers and spoke cards. Metro is also sponsoring 120 bicycle traffic skills classes throughout L.A. County this summer. Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Administration.