In 2010, the City of Long Beach created the nation’s first Bike-Friendly Business District (BFBD) program through a grant from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. Four districts – Bixby Knolls, Cambodia Town, the East Village Arts District, and Retro Row – participated in the pilot, which encourages merchants and their customers to replace cars with bikes. After the pilot’s spring 2012 end, the BFBDs are continuing under the coordination of each district.
Why BFBDs? Bicycling encourages shopping and dining locally. As Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster explains, it also introduces people to businesses we may not notice while speeding by in a car: “I see parts of the city on my bike that I would never even notice if I was just driving. And I love it. It’s not only great exercise, it’s a way for me personally to get closer to the city.” Increased bicycling and decreased driving in business districts also reduces traffic and parking issues.
Learn more at bikelongbeach.org and in Momentum Mag Issue 58.
Long Beach, CA will host the leading international conference on walking, bicycling and creating great communities through Placemaking, Pro Walk/ Pro Bike: Pro Place 2012. For conference updates and more visit Momentum Mag's Bike Advocacy Blog.