Program back after being suspended in September
By Chad Winthrop
LA Metro’s bike share system is back on the Westside.
Metro and the Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) on Thursday relaunched a new Metro Bike Share System on the Westside in time for Bike Month in May.
According to Metro, the agency has reinstalled 54 bike share stations and has plans to add 13 additional stations for a total of 67 in Westside communities, including Santa Monica, Venice, Mar Vista, Palms, Playa Vista and surrounding areas. Additional stations will be sited in Westside communities along the E Line including Westwood and Sawtelle. With the conversion, electric bikes will now be available to riders from Downtown LA to the Westside.
“With bike share available again on the Westside, Metro is continually improving our customers’ experience and giving them greater choices for their personal mobility,” said Metro CEO Phillip A. Washington. “Bike Share is one of our key initiatives to improve first/last mile access to and from our stations. The combination of transit and bike share can help everyone better access local destinations and help reduce auto trips in our county.”
Metro temporarily suspended its bike share program on the Westside last September to remove all “Smart Bikes” from its Westside service offerings. The agency’s Smart Bikes are not required to be physically docked to a bike share station. The bikes contain geofencing limitations that restrict their ability to be used outside the Westside area without incurring additional service fees.
“Classic Bikes, which are station-based and include an electric-assist option, have higher ridership and are simpler to use. Metro’s vendor converted the Westside fleet at no cost to the agency,” Metro said.
There are now 1,500 Metro Bikes and 209 stations located on the Westside, Central and Downtown LA, and North Hollywood, according to Metro.
Every May Metro and the Southern California region celebrate bicycling as a sustainable and healthy transportation mode. This year, Metro will recognize Bike Month in May 2021, including Bike Anywhere Day (Friday, May 21) that will coincide with Bike Week (May 17-23, 2021)
For a map of all available Westside stations and bicycles, visit https://bikeshare.metro.net/stations/.