Feb 142018
Benefits And Risks Of Bicycling In Los Angeles

Photo by Josh Bean on Unsplash


Bicycling whether as exercise or a transportation mode is good for us, the environment and Los Angeles. With that said, ours isn’t a city built for bicyclists which is why before embracing bicycling as a lifestyle it’s good to examine both, the pros and the cons.

Health Benefits Of Bicycling

  • Riding a bike is a low impact exercise, it doesn’t endanger joints: it improves their flexibility
  • Bicycling is an aerobic exercise: it contributes to heart health and helps prevent cardiovascular disease
  • It strengthens muscles and bones
  • It improves balance and coordination
  • Biking burns calories and helps control body weight
  • The effort involved in bicycling promotes oxygenation
  • Riding a bike in a non-urban area relieves stress

Environmental Benefits Of Bicycling

  • Bicycling doesn’t require fossil fuel
  • It doesn’t contribute to air pollution
  • It doesn’t contribute to noise levels
  • It doesn’t endanger pedestrians

Social Support For Bicycling In Los Angeles

In climate change-conscious Los Angeles bicycling has been welcomed and encouraged by the residents as well as the City’s leadership. Both, weekend athletes and commuters are buying – and owning – bicycles. Organizations centered on bicycling have sprung out. New, cycling-related social trends emerged.

The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC) advocates for bikers’ safety and organizes bicycling events since 1998.

Since 2010, CicLAvia makes history by changing the perception of what bicycling is and what it could be. During a CicLAvia’s event, parts of a participating city are closed to motorized traffic while bicyclists, roller skaters, and walkers are welcomed. Each CicLAvia event is somewhat of a mix, there is the sport part and social interaction part, the latter isn’t common in a city of drivers confined to their vehicles. (Incidentally, the next CicLAvia, called “Heart of the Foothills” takes place on April 22, 2018)

Bicycling became so popular that even L.A. Metro jumped on the wagon, introducing its Bike Share program. L.A. Metro Bike Share made hundreds of self service bikes easily available to the public with the option of getting a bike at any station and returning it to any station.

That’s of course not the entire story. The added convenience of electric bikes attracts less athletic bicycling enthusiasts. Most of the e-bikes are “human-electric hybrids” and make switching from one mode to another a snap. For better or worse, e-bikes – just like cars – are becoming a status symbol in Southern California. Along with state-of-the-art technology, e-bike prices are getting more and more impressive as well.

So far so good, right? Bicycling is good for humans, Los Angeles (bicyclists don’t destroy roads and highways) and the Earth. There are things one can see and experience from a bike, no car can match. But: yes, there is a “but”. Los Angeles wasn’t built with bicyclists in mind, hence:

Dangers Of Bicycling In Los Angeles

  • There are still too few streets with bike lines
  • Existing bicycle lines could benefit from better maintenance
  • Unclear street signage is often confusing to both, bicyclists and drivers
  • Potholes, cracked pavements and sidewalks make bicycling hazardous
  • Last but not least, since the separation of bicycles and motor vehicles isn’t great it puts the more vulnerable (the bicyclist) at a disadvantage in an accident.

All of these factors contribute to accidents. So far, the City of Los Angeles has paid 19 million dollars for bicycle accidents that resulted from confusing signage, poor street and / or sidewalk conditions. (If you are a homeowner you already know who is responsible for the condition of the sidewalk in front of your property. Hint, not the City.)

With all that said, things are turning in favor of Los Angeles bicyclists. New legislation (both, L.A.’s and the State’s of California) will improve the infrastructure of our roads. Preventing bike accidents and ensuring bicyclists’ safety is a part of the plan.

So take heart: nothing beats our weather, except perhaps bicycling in So Cal!



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Nov 012016

Metro Bike Share comes to the Port of Los Angeles

Getting from place to place along the LA Waterfront is about to get a little easier – and a lot more fun.

The Port of Los Angeles, in partnership with the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro), has been given the green light by the LA Board of Harbor Commissioners to expand the Metro Bike Share program to the 12-mile LA Waterfront by next summer. The vote clears the way for consideration by the LA County Metro Board, which is expected to vote on the proposal soon.

“Bike Share at the Port of Los Angeles will offer a new, fun and environmentally friendly way to explore and experience the LA Waterfront and its many attractions,” said Doane Liu, deputy executive director at the Port of Los Angeles. “This new program will provide another transportation option for residents and visitors to consider, which will have the added benefit of reducing local traffic and parking congestion too.”

The LA Waterfront Bike Share will include 11 stations to start, eight in San Pedro and three in Wilmington, with approximately 10 shareable bikes per station. Payment kiosks at each station will allow riders to use either their Metro TAP card or credit card to pay, with costs varying depending on the option selected.

Proposed station stops will include:

  • Fanfare Fountains at Gateway Plaza / World Cruise Center
  • Catalina Sea and Air Terminal
  • Battleship IOWA
  • Downtown Harbor
  • CRAFTED at the Port of Los Angeles
  • Ports O’ Call Village (future San Pedro Public Market)
  • DoubleTree Hotel San Pedro
  • Cabrillo Beach
  • Wilmington Waterfront Park – West
  • Wilmington Waterfront Park – East
  • Banning’s Landing Community Center

The Metro Bike Share program was officially rolled out in downtown Los Angeles by Mayor Eric Garcetti this past July, a launch that included nearly 65 stations and 1,000 bikes. The program is designed to improve mobility and access for residents and visitors via shared-use bikes and docking stations located in key locations with easy access traveling from one location to another.

Bike Share also links to Metro’s regional transportation system of buses, subways and light rails. Metro hopes to expand Bike Share to nine total regions, including the LA Waterfront, building up to an inventory of more than 4,000 bikes.

Metro and the Port will equally split the capital costs to create the new Bike Share infrastructure along the LA Waterfront, with the Port additionally covering 65% of the ongoing operation and maintenance for the new Port Bike Share locations. Port costs will be funded primarily by its Public Access Investment Fund.

The new Bike Share program is one of several alternative transportation options being developed along the LA Waterfront. The San Pedro Business Improvement District doubled the number of rubber-tire trolley cars this summer, which allows it to cover more stops and routes, and is expected to increase ridership. In addition, developers of the approved San Pedro Public Market recently announced plans to include a mobile Red Trolley Car replica as part of the new development.

The Port of Los Angeles is America’s premier port and has a strong commitment to developing innovatively strategic and sustainable operations that benefit Southern California’s economy and quality of life. North America’s leading seaport by container volume and cargo value, the Port of Los Angeles facilitated $270 billion in trade during 2015. Port operations and commerce facilitate more than 133,000 jobs (about one in 14) in the City of Los Angeles and 479,000 jobs (or one in 18) in the five-county Southern California region. The San Pedro Bay Ports support nearly 1 million California jobs and 2.8 million nationwide.



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Oct 162016

CicLAvia Sunday 10/16/16

CicLAvia is on, again! Los Angeles is celebrating another car-free Sunday. Many streets in Downtown LA, Boyle Heights, Chinatown and Westlake will be closed to cars (from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m) while cyclists, skaters, runners and pedestrians enjoy a day of physical activity, socializing and fresh air.

Need more info? Download CicLAvia flier!

Don’t have a bike of your own? No problem! Try Metro Bike Share.

Can’t make the time? Long Beach is the next city to hold a cycling event:
Beach Streets Midtown
November 12, 2016
Saturday 9 AM – 3 PM



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Jul 122016

Los Angeles Metro Bike Share

Mayor Garcetti and hundreds of cyclists launch Metro Bike Share in Downtown L.A.

Los Angeles has officially joined the bike share revolution — giving Angelenos and visitors a new, fun, and exciting way to explore Downtown L.A.
Hundreds of L.A. area cyclists gathered in Grand Park to launch Metro Bike Share, which will consist of up to 1,000 shared bicycles at approximately 65 stations throughout the downtown area.
“Downtown L.A. is a fascinating place to explore on two wheels,” said Los Angeles Mayor and MTA Board Second Vice Chair Eric Garcetti. “Metro Bike Share gives Angelenos and visitors an easy, affordable way to experience some of our city’s most incredible sights.”

The $11 million project is a joint initiative by Metro and the City of Los Angeles Department of Transportation. It is the first pilot to establish bike sharing in the City of Los Angeles, and has the potential to bring up to 4,000 bicycles to communities throughout the region.

Several bike share stations are now located in close proximity to the Metro rail and bus network, giving transit riders a convenient way to combine bicycle and transit trips. The system is the first in the nation to be operated by a transit agency, and the first to use a single fare card — the TAP card — for both the transit system and bike share.

Bike share stations have been strategically placed at major transit hubs and key destinations to benefit people who live, work, play, and socialize in the downtown area.

Metro and the City selected bike share locations to increase access to museums, libraries, schools, retail, employment, and residential areas. Downtown Los Angeles is the county’s highest job concentration, and its residential population is growing. It is also leading tourist destination, with several world-class sports, entertainment, dining, and cultural attractions.

To use the bike share system, customers can purchase a monthly or annual flex pass at www.metro.net/bikeshare. Beginning August 1, it will be possible to walk up to a bike share station and check out a bike with a credit card. Users can download a special Metro Bike Share App available on iOS and Android that will enable them to buy a pass, check bike and dock availability, and find the nearest station.

About Metro
Created in 1993, The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) is a multimodal transportation agency that transports about 1.4 million passengers daily on a fleet of 2,200 clean air buses and six rail lines. The agency also oversees bus, rail,