Actually, off the curb would be more accurate. As the first part of a new safety campaign, “the most bike-friendly city in America” is enforcing the often-ignored rule that riding on the sidewalk in certain parts of the city is technically illegal. Police officers will be handing safety cards out to encourage bicyclists to “Walk it or Lock it” in busy business districts. The idea is that with increased summer foot traffic, both bicyclists and pedestrians will be safer if everyone learns how to “SOS: Share Our Streets.”
Long Beach has been drawing much praise from cycling advocates and other cities for its progressive approach to integrating bicyclists into the urban fabric. The city has raised over $17 million in state and federal grants to improve its current bike system through traffic improvements, education, and bike-share programs, including several new snazzy bike lanes and colorful bike corrals throughout the city. The “Walk it or Lock it” campaign is merely a reminder that cyclists, pedestrians, and motorists just need to be mindful of each other and follow the rules.
Affected areas include the business districts Broadway and Pine Avenue in Downtown Long Beach, Atlantic Avenue in Bixby Knolls, and Second Street in trendy Belmont Shores, along “Retro Row,” and in Cambodia Town on Anaheim Street. Residents of Long Beach are encouraged to complete the 2011 Bike Safety Survey to weigh in with their opinion.