Video: Bike Week L.A. kicks off with new bicycle ridership report

This morning at Union Station officials kicked off “Bike Week L.A.” a week-long effort this week to encourage people to bicycle as a way to commute to work and for recreation. See full details of Bike Week L.A. here. 

Los Angeles City Councilman and Metro Board Member Mike Bonin joined with the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition to announce the results of the LACBC’s biannual survey of bicycle riding. The report found that bicycle riding in the City of Los Angeles has increased 7.5 percent since 2011. The count also found that:

  • The busiest time for bicycling is the evening commute period, suggesting that most people are riding for transportation.
  • People strongly prefer riding on dedicated facilities like bike paths and bike lanes over streets with no bicycle facilities.
  • Fewer than one in five bicyclists are female while female ridership is highest on bike paths and bike lanes, suggesting that the lack of safe and comfortable facilities is causing a gender disparity among bicyclists.
  • Bike lanes improve bicyclist behavior, cutting sidewalk riding in half compared to streets without and reducing wrong-way riding as well.
  • This report shows that as ridership continues to grow in Los Angeles, not everyone feels safe riding without better bicycle facilities.

Download the full report here.

 

Bikes and walking + transit = lower greenhouse gas emissions

FirstLastMile

I thought that posting the above chart would be a nice way to begin Bike Week. As the chart neatly shows, taking transit can be an effective way to reduce greenhouse gases — especially those who bike or walk to and from light rail stations. It makes sense: no fossil fuels are needed to power your legs.

The chart is from Metro’s  First Mile/Last Mile Strategic Plan that was adopted by the Metro Board of Directors in April.

Greenhouse gases, of course, are the primary agents for climate change. As the amount of carbon dioxide and other gases from the burning of fossil fuels increases in our atmosphere, the planet is growing warmer. Here’s a good explanation of the basics from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The reduction of important topic given how much climate change has been in the news lately. The White House released a report last week on the ongoing impacts in the United States from climate change, including warmer temperatures, increased rains and flooding in some areas, drought in others and more intense wildfires and tree die-offs due to insects. The report followed one by the United Nations released in March that found the same phenomenon on a global level.

The state of California, too, agrees there are impacts and we’re already seeing them:

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There are some important caveats when it comes to figuring out greenhouse gas emissions from transit. One involves how a project is built. It helps to have a green construction policy to help curtail pollution from trucks and other heavy equipment (and Metro does have such a policy). Even more important: the number of people riding a train or bus. The more people riding, the more efficient buses and trains are. (See this Duke University study comparing passenger per mile emissions from a bus getting 2.33 mpg versus a car that gets 25 mpg).

Metro’s numbers are based on a study looking at the Gold Line and Orange Line published in the academic journal Environmental Research Letters in 2013 by researchers from UCLA, Arizona State University and UC Berkeley. The Federal Transit Administration in 2010 also published a useful guide to comparing greenhouse gas emissions from cars and public transit. The FTA’s work shows that heavy rail transit (typically subways such as Metro’s Red/Purple Line that use bigger, heavier trains) are even more efficient than buses and light rail, due in part to heavier ridership.

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How to bring your bike on board and ride Metro for free on Bike to Work Day, May 15

For a free ride on Bike to Work Day, May 15, use the Gate Help intercom to notify an attendant who will open the ADA gate for you!

For a free ride on Bike to Work Day, May 15, use the Gate Help intercom to notify an attendant who will open the ADA gate for you!

Next week is Bike Week LA, and Bike to Work Day takes place Thursday, May 15. Metro is once again offering free rides to all those who board with a bicycle or bicycle helmet on that day. To claim your free ride on Metro Rail at latched stations, use the Gate Help intercom located near the fare gates to notify an attendant who will open the ADA gates for you.

Additional details and tips on how to bring your bike on board below.

  • Board trains using doors marked with yellow decals.
  • Always walk your bike within Metro stations or on trains.
  • For everyone’s safety, do not bring bikes on escalators; use the stairs or elevators instead.
  • Elevator priority will be given to passengers with disabilities.
  • Do not use emergency exit gates at turnstiles except during emergencies or unless directed by law enforcement or Metro personnel.
  • Observe all Bikes on Metro guidelines.
  • If bringing your bike on a bus, try to sit or stand near the front of the bus to keep an eye on your bicycle. At your stop, notify the operator you will be removing your bike and exit from the front door.

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Metro promotes bicycle activities and festivities during official Bike Week L.A. May 12-18

Photo: Metro.

Photo: Metro.

Here is the news release from Metro:

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) is sponsoring “Bike Week L.A.” activities from May 12-18 to encourage people to ride bicycles to work, school and other destinations throughout LA County to reduce traffic and air pollution. Bring a bicycle or bicycle helmet on Metro buses and trains for a free ride on Bike to Work Day, May 15.

Metro will be offering a chance to win several prizes, such as a brand new Novara Big Buzz Bike or a cool Novara E.T.A. Backpack from REI, an Abus U-lock  and other great prizes, to those who pledge to bike to work on Bike to Work Day, Thursday, May 15. Pledges may be made online at http://www.metro.net/bikes/bike-week/bw-pledge-form/. Schools, workplaces, and advocacy groups will hold bicycle pit stops that day with free refreshments, giveaways and bicycling information for bicycle commuters. Those who would like to share their bicycle adventures with Metro should tag their social media posts #BikeWeekLA” at the bottom, along with the standard messaging on social media.

Cyclists will have a chance to attend Fix your Bike workshops, Guided Rides and Bike Local Discount Stores. New this year, Metro is also hosting a Metro Bike Night at Union Station featuring special guests, live music, food trucks, bike fashion and photo contests, bike trivia, movies and prizes.

Transit riders can show their valid TAP card at 80 destinations throughout Los Angeles County and save at local eats, museums, theatre, and shopping destinations including MOCA, the Ahmanson Theatre, Amoeba Music in Hollywood, Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific, the California Science Center,Grand Central Market, Yogurtland and more.  Mention “Bike Week LA” at participating bike shops and other businesses to receive a special discount or offer during the week of May 12-18.

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Temple City to host Rosemead Boulevard Grand Opening Festival on May 10

Photo: C.I.C.L.E.

Photo: C.I.C.L.E.

Join Temple City in celebrating the completion of the Rosemead Boulevard Safety Enhancements and Beautification Project this Saturday, May 10, at the Grand Opening Festival. The community event will take place on the southbound lanes of Rosemead Boulevard between Las Tunas Drive and Broadway from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Activities include a scavenger hunt, public art walking tours, raffle prizes, interactive exhibits and more.

It’s also where Metro will kick off Bike Week L.A. with the Old Roots, New Routes Temple City Bike Ride led by C.I.C.L.E. and Eastside Bike Club. The ride leaves at 11 a.m. and will head down L.A. County’s newest cycle tracks.

The Rosemead Boulevard Safety Enhancements and Beautification Project was funded $2.25 million through Metro’s 2011 Call for Projects. For the full press release from Temple City, keep reading after the jump.

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Metro Sponsors “Old Roots, New Routes Ride”, led by C.I.C.L.E. and the Eastside Bike Club!

On Saturday, May 10 Metro will sponsor the “Old Roots, New Routes” bicycle ride, led by C.I.C.L.E. and the Eastside Bike Club. This ride will be part of the Rosemead Boulevard Grand Opening (GO!) celebration. The event will celebrate Temple City’s streetscape redesign of Rosemead Boulevard, a project partially funded by Metro’s Call for Projects. The redesign transforms the city’s main commercial corridor into a vibrant community destination featuring new sidewalks, canopy trees, public art and Los Angeles County’s newest cycle tracks.

Cycle tracks provide space that is intended to be exclusively used by bicyclists. This space is separated from motor vehicle travel lanes, parking lanes and sidewalks by a physical barrier. By separating bicyclists from motor vehicles, cycle tracks offer an increased level of safety and make bicycling attractive to a larger share of the population.

Ride participants will have an opportunity to practice riding on the newly-implemented cycle tracks while exploring Temple City’s past, present and future. This ride will make one stop at Temple City Park for an open-air museum exhibit curated by the Workman and Temple Family Homestead Museum.

When: Saturday, May 10, 2014
Time: Meet at 10:30 am, ride will leave promptly at 11 am and return by 12 pm
Where: Rosemead Blvd. (between Las Tunas & Broadway) Temple City 91780
Accessible by: Metro buses 78, 79, 266, 378, 487 and 489

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Get ready for Bike Week L.A.: pledge to ride for a chance to win prizes

Have bicycle, will travel! Bike Week L.A.–taking place May 12 – 18–will soon be upon us. Here are some highlights of scheduled events so you can start planning. For a full schedule of events, click here.

Make sure your bike is in tip-top shape by attending a fix your bike event on Saturday, May 10, then join us for the free Old Roots, New Routes Temple City Bike Ride at 10:30 a.m. Explore Temple City’s past, present and future by riding through Los Angeles County’s newest cycle tracks with C.I.C.L.E. and the Eastside Bike Club.

On Tuesday, May 13, head to Good Samaritan Hospital’s 11th Annual Blessing of the Bicycles. Blessings begin at 8 a.m.

On Wednesday, May 14, join Metro for a guided bike ride led by LADOT Bicycle Program Bicycle Coordinator Michelle Mowery, Bodacious Bike Babes, Metro, CICLE, LACBC, and others.  The ride will leave from Union Station’s Patsaouras Bus Plaza at 8:15 a.m. and visit the Arts Districts, Mariachi Plaza, Civic Center and Olvera Street. 

On Thursday, May 15, it’s Bike to Work Day! More than 100 pit stops around L.A. County will be offering refreshments and giveaways to those who ride. Pledge to ride and you’ll have the chance to win some great prizes, including a Novara Big Buzz Bike, Novara E.T.A. Backpack from REI, an Abus U-lock and more! Plus, Metro is offering free rides to those who have their bicycle or bike helmet with them.

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Limited edition Bike Week L.A. T-shirts, available at Bike Night at Union Station. Which color is your favorite? (Blue, the answer is blue.)

And be sure not to miss Bike Night at Union Station, the grand finale of Bike Week L.A. The event will take place on Friday, May 16 in the Fred Harvey Room and courtyard area of Union Station West from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. Bike Night will feature special guests, live music, food trucks, free bike valet, bike portraits, a fashion show and more. There will be a raffle with some fabulous prizes, and it’s where you can get one of the limited edition Bike Week L.A. T-shirts! (Shirts will be handed out on a first come, first served basis until supplies run out.) RSVP for Bike Night today!

Throughout the week, Bike Local discounts will be offered at bike-friendly businesses around the County. Check back for more updates on Bike Week L.A. as we gear up to roll out.

Metro launches new bike ad campaign in time For Bike Week L.A. May 12-18

Nina & JohnIn anticipation of Bike Week L.A. May 12-18, 2014, Metro has launched a new bicycle ad campaign entitled “Every Day is a Bike Day” to encourage more Angelenos to bicycle for every day transportation.

Running on county billboards, the Internet and Metro buses from May through July 2014, the new ads normalize bicycling as part of everyday life and show that bicycling is for everyone. The ads also remind drivers about bicyclists’ presence, encouraging safe and shared interactions on L.A. county streets.

The new campaign builds off Metro’s 2013 “Every Lane is a Bike Lane” campaign that encouraged motorists and bicyclists to share the road to decrease incidents and increase safety. The popular campaign helped raise awareness that bicyclists can ride in the full traffic lane in certain situations and have equal rights and responsibilities on the road per the California Vehicle Code.

Metro also partnered with the bicycling community on the campaign. Members of local bicycling groups and non-profit organizations, including Multicultural Communities for Mobility, Bici Libre, Wolfpack Hustle and Eastside Riders Bike Club are featured in the ads.

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Why You Ride: Bicycle Edition – Nick Rosenblum, has only been riding his bicycle for 6 months, but is officially converted!

We are collecting nominations for the Year-Round Golden Pedal Awards, Metro’s competition for great stories about bicycling. We’re featuring these stories in a monthly Why You Ride series – because for many Angelenos, Bike Week never ends!

  • Name: Nick Rosenblum
  • Start: Palms Boulevard at National Blvd. (Los Angeles Westside)
  • End: Venice Boulevard at Beethoven Street. (Los Angeles Westside)
  • Distance: Medium and Long Commute (1 to 5 miles and 5 miles or more)
  • Commuting Features: Traffic-congested commute via bike lanes.

 

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Nick standing by his commuter bicycle!

We received Nick’s nomination from Diana Ruzova, someone who knows him very well. Diana told us that Nick didn’t always ride his bike around the city, but after several skateboarding injuries he decided to give biking a try. We congratulate Nick for his perseverance and encourage him to continue bicycling.

Now Nick barely drives. He bikes a few miles to his job as an assistant sound editor at an animation production/post production company. Nick takes the Venice Boulevard bike lane and has to deal with nearby traffic going to and from the freeway. He also bikes to Hollywood, Manhattan Beach and other parts of the region.

With help from our generous Bike Week sponsors, Nick will receive a Bike Week LA bag with a Nathan safety vest, patch kits, bike blinkers, bike maps, and “Every Lane is a Bike Lane” bumper stickers.

A few photos from yesterday’s CicLAvia on Wilshire Boulevard

Photo by Gary Leonard for Metro.

Photo by Gary Leonard for Metro.

No surprise: another big crowd for CicLAvia on Sunday, with cyclists, walkers and others taking over Wilshire Boulevard between downtown Los Angeles and the Miracle Mile. Here are a few pics.

https://twitter.com/MargaretTwitty8/status/451420458899214336/photo/1

Above photo is by Andy Sternberg, via Flickr creative commons.