Meet the fixers: These transportation gurus coax Angelenos onto bikes. - Grist


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Grist 50

Delaram Pourabdi / LADOT

Meet the fixers: These transportation gurus coax Angelenos onto bikes.

Los Angeles isn’t exactly the first city that comes to mind when you think “bike-friendly.” It’s enormous, polluted, and hot. But, as much of the country looks to California to lead the way on climate action, more people are paying attention to the transportation choices of the City of Angels, which contains roughly a quarter of the state’s population.

The intricacies of a bike-share system that can work for a large, complex metro area like Los Angeles, made up of 88 different municipalities, is something Rubina Ghazarian and Avital Shavit think about a lot. Ghazarian has been working to launch an L.A. program since 2011, first with the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and later with the Los Angeles Department of Transportation. Shavit got involved in 2014, taking up at Metro where Ghazarian left off.

In July of 2016, the bike share finally launched. The network of cycle stations is designed to connect people to public transit systems and transport them around Downtown L.A. Already, people have taken 122,000 trips on the bikes, saving 292,292 pounds of CO2. Other municipalities across Los Angeles County have expressed interest in joining the program in the coming months and years.

Meet all the fixers on this year’s Grist 50.