The 6th CicLAVia event on April 21 heading for the first time from downtown Los Angeles to Venice Beach via Venice Boulevard, does not run through Culver City proper, but close enough for the City to take advantage of the event.
CicLAVia has designated Culver City as one of the eight hubs along the route, and thanks to a challenge grant of $10,000 from Sony Studios and fundraising efforts by the Culver City Downtown Business Association and private donations, plans are afoot to close down Main Street and turn Parcel B into an area for the cyclists that will include bike repair services, a first aid station, port-a-potties and a bike valet service.
At Monday night’s City Council meeting, CicLAVia Executive Director Aaron Paley said the thousands of people that will come through the area during the event is a perfect opportunity to visit downtown Culver City and to eat at the city’s myriad of restaurants.
Paley said that by providing a bike valet station cyclists “won’t have to spend three minutes locking up their bikes,” and they can go and enjoy the local restaurants.
He added that restaurants in downtown Los Angeles have said CicLAVia has provided them some of their best business. For some it has been their best business day of the year.
“We think this [Culver City] hub will draw people off Venice Boulevard and into Culver City,” he said, adding that people would be able to see the Culver City hub from Venice Boulevard because there will be plenty of signage and there will probably be a balloon arch on Main Street drawing people into the city.
Paley also noted that the event is designed so that people can take public transportation and that Metro will increase the number and frequency of its trains on the day so people can travel to and from the hubs. He said that they’re expecting a great number of people to come to the event especially via the Culver City Expo Line Station.
However, the City of Culver City will also have to provide city services including police protection in the area, especially given the fact that Westbound Venice Boulevard will be closed to vehicles. The City will invest $12,500 from City funds for the labor costs involved.
Culver City Police Captain Dave Tankenson said the department would be focusing on traffic enforcement. “We believe there will be a large overflow of vehicles into the City that has probably very positive implications for the businesses.” However, he added, the department wanted to make sure that the safety concerns are taken seriously.
At Monday night’s meeting, the council also voted for the City to become a co-sponsor of the Culver City CicLAVia hub.