• News

Workers in Beverly Hills Ride to Work…Really

Beverly Hills Patch The Green Files By Ellen Lutwak | May 19, 2011 People do ride their bikes to work in this town. May is National Bike Month and Friday is Bike to Work Day. It’s great to hear about people who cycle to Beverly Hills for their 9-to-5. For those on the green scene, it couldn’t get much better than working for a socially conscientious company like Participant Media, housed in a Beverly Hills-built LEED building. Workers here can cycle to the office and park at bicycle racks provided by the city inside the building’s parking structure. Bronwyn Beck, a program analyst for Participant Media’s TakePart division, has been car-free for about four years. She has cycled to work for nearly three years, having biked to Participant since March when she started with the company. Without an easy bus route from her home in Silver Lake, she rides down Melrose Avenue in the morning and Santa Monica Boulevard on her way home. The total commute is about 19 miles round trip (9.5 miles each way). Beck thinks Beverly Hills could become more bike-friendly with sharrows—a pavement marking on streets popular with bicyclists but too narrow for conventional bike lanes. She personally prefers the lanes that are marked with a bold icon “because they indicate to drivers that bicycles belong on the street and have a right to take the lane.” As for making the streets safer for bike riders? “I think lowering speed limits is the most important thing to improve safety for cyclists, pedestrians and motorists alike,” Beck said. Joe Crowley, IT manager, has been with Participant Media for almost two years. He doesn’t own a car nor does he have a driver’s license. His commute to work includes riding as well as putting his bike on the MTA bus. “Riding into work, I take the La Cienega bus north, the 105 or 705. I dismount at Santa Monica Boulevard, then bike west to Beverly Boulevard and then take Civic Center Drive into our workplace. That’s about 3 miles,” Crowley said. “My commute home is all bike: usually east bound on Burton Way to La Cienega, south, down to my house near Pico Boulevard.” Beverly Hills is challenging for bikers and walkers, as well as and drivers, Crowley said. “It would be nice if motorists would obey stop signs in this area. I believe that what is needed is really a culture change, not just painting in sharrows and more bike signs,” he said. “Perhaps participating in CicLAvia and shutting down a few streets over a weekend can help raise awareness that bikes are here to stay if L.A. County is to grow.” To view entire article, please click on the following link: http://beverlyhills.patch.com/articles/workers-in-beverly-hills-ride-to-workreally