Why bicycles will push cars aside when CicLAvia comes to the Harbor Area



From Wilmington to San Pedro, a swath of some of the area’s most heavily traveled streets will be closed to traffic for a good chunk of Sunday, inviting people instead to bike, walk or skate — or even dance, if you’re feeling especially inspired — through town.

The CicLAvia event has a few business owners scrambling this week, saying they would have liked to have been included in the logistical planning.

But while sure to cause disruption — among the closures planned from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. will be Harbor Boulevard on what is Ports O’ Call’s busiest day of the week — CicLAvia has been hailed as a success when held in other areas of the city. This is the first time CicLAvia is coming to the Harbor Area.

“The number of people who ride in these things really do get to experience the town in a completely different light, so it’s actually pretty cool,” said Lorena Parker, director of the downtown-waterfront Business Improvement District in San Pedro.

The 7-mile “Wilmington Meet San Pedro” CicLAvia route starts at Banning Park in Wilmington and travels south along Avalon Boulevard, turning west at C Street to link to John S. Gibson Boulevard heading into San Pedro and then to Harbor Boulevard, Fifth Street and Pacific Avenue, ending at 22nd Street.

There are no strict rules, however, so participants can start or stop anywhere along the course they like. Rest and water stations will be set up along the route and cars will be allowed to cross the impacted streets from Anaheim Street, Ninth Street and 19th Street.

‘Chill’ in San Pedro

Temperatures are expected to hit about 80 that day, so participants will be looking for some shade and refreshment, Parker said.

A “chill event” from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. will be sponsored by the San Pedro BID at the city parking lot on the east side of Mesa Street between Fifth and Sixth streets.

Shaded areas, free water, an ice cream truck, children’s face painting, balloons and a visitor information both will be available. There also will be a bike valet service — so people can leave their bikes in a secure area while they hop the trolley or walk around to explore the downtown or waterfront. A strolling jazz band will provide entertainment, restaurants will be open for lunch and other businesses are expected to offer coupons and other incentives to bring people back to the area.

Bikes also can be rented and dropped off via the new Metro Bike Share…

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