Bike Sharing in Santa Monica

THE PROJECT

Bring a bike sharing program to the City of Santa Monica.

OUR PARTICIPATION

We co-hosted a bike share community forum with the City in the summer of 2011 to discuss bringing a bike sharing program to Santa Monica, where we were joined by bike advocacy groups and representatives from bike sharing programs from around the country. Similar to the popular zipcar system, a bike share program provides short-terms bike rental through an automated system. We advocated for bringing bike sharing to Santa Monica to:

  • Help Santa Monica residents, employees, and visitors reduce the need to use cars, which will in turn reduce pollution, emissions, traffic, and parking congestion in the city
  • Improve the local economy, as bicycling cuts down on gasoline and other car-related costs, and makes popular businesses more accessible
  • Serve as a catalyst for communities across the Los Angeles basin to develop their own bike share programs, helping the region as a whole depend less on greenhouse gas-emitting vehicles 

We submitted recommendations to the City Council to accelerate the implementation of the bike sharing component of the Santa Monica Bike Action Plan, and organized businesses and community groups around the issue. We also advocated creating a Bike Share Task Force to spearhead development of the bike sharing plan. This task force would help identify locations for bike share stations, review the types of bike share models that would be most compatible with Santa Monica, and explore options for raising the upfront capital needed to launch the program.

Global Green Policy Associate Gina Goodhill presented our proposal at a Council meeting in the fall of 2011, arguing that bike sharing warrants high priority in order to get the City's Bike Master Plan and a comprehensive network of bicycle lanes in place. She also pointed out the success of bike sharing programs in other cities such as Denver, Boston, New York, and Minneapolis. The City Council overwhelmingly voted to pass the Bike Action Plan with an added emphasis on bringing a bike share system to Santa Monica. Due in part to our work, the City received a $1.5 million grant from Metro that would fund bike share in 2016. We are now working to accelerate the launch date of this grant, and to coordinate it with efforts from the city and county of Los Angeles to launch bike share programs.

NEXT STEPS

In September 2012, the City of Santa Monica was awarded at $500,000 grant for bike share plans, with funds earmarked for Global Green to assist with outreach and marketing efforts. 

We're helping to bring the local community on board -- to find businessesinterested in having bike share stations nearby.

MORE ABOUT OUR WORK

Win for bike sharing in Santa Monica

Bike sharing forum