CicLAVia raises $12,000 to open streets to pedestrians

CicLAVia raises $12,000 to open streets to pedestrians

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Bicycles, skateboards, rollerblades, scooters and even unicycles were among the many ways of transportation during the third CicLAvia event in Los Angeles on Oct. 9, 2011. Sundial File Photo

Students can join their peers and enjoy 10 miles of strolling, biking and playing in LA’s streets this Sunday during CicLAvia.

The organization concluded its pledging period last Friday with a little over its intended goal or $12,000, resulting in $12,343 for this month’s event. The pledging was carried out through Kickstarter, an online funding platform for creative projects.

The money raised will help maintain the newly expanded CicLAvia route, which was originally 7.5 miles. Some of the money will also be used to fund additional activities, such as live music, games and walking tours of L.A.’s historic streets.

“We’re always in this constant pattern of driving, but what CicLAvia does is create spacial awareness of your community,” said Frances Rosenberg, 21, former CSUN Bike Collective member and senior double majoring in philosophy and humanities.

According to Rosenberg, CicLAvia allows individuals to venture into other communities and pay attention to small independent businesses one would not normally notice in a car.

This event seeks to promote alternative green transportation, open space, public health and community building by opening up the normally car congested streets.

Some of the neighborhoods that will be open to Angelenos include Koreatown, Boyle Heights, Little Tokyo, Fashion District, East Hollywood and the recent addition of South Los Angeles. Residents are welcomed to bike, skateboard, wheelchair or walk through these neighborhoods in hopes of experiencing the city from a new perspective.

The American Planning Association (APA), a nonprofit organization that provides leadership in the development of living communities, will host its 2012 National Planning Conference in Los Angeles. The upcoming fourth CicLAvia event will be held on the same day as the APA conference.

CSUN’s Urban Planning Studies Association will be participating in CicLAvia in an organized ride.

“This event lets you see the potential of what a healthy city can be like for one day,” said Antonio Villaraigosa, 22, member of the urban planning association and junior majoring in urban studies and planning.
Villaraigosa said that closing off the streets for one day can eventually lead to more car-free days.

CSUN’s Bike Collective has also organized a ride route to CicLAvia. Individuals will meet in front to the Oviatt steps at 7:30 a.m. and leave to the Van Nuys Orange Line Station at 8:00 a.m. They will be picking up riders who can’t meet at the campus along the way.

“We have participated in CicLAvia’s events, all the way back to the very first CicLAvia,” said Dennis D’Alfonso, 25, a junior majoring in mechanical engineering and ride leader of the collective.
The bike collective and CicLAvia share similar goals in terms of motivating people to use a mode of transportation that is sustainable and healthy.

“A lot of people worry about the speed of our rides, worrying that we will leave them behind, but our collective has a ‘no rider left behind’ policy,” D’Alfonso said, encouraging others to join the organized ride to CicLAvia.