On Sunday, April 15, 2012, CicLAvia will transform 10 miles of Los Angeles' normally congested streets into a car-free, linear park for strolling, biking, playing, and experiencing the city from a new perspective. The April 15 event will be the fourth CicLAvia, and it will coincide with the national conference of the American Planning Association (APA), which has chosen Los Angeles as its host city for the first time in 26 years. CicLAvia is featured in the conference companion book, Planning Los Angeles, as one of the city's most innovative planning initiatives - a large-scale, public celebration that has come to symbolize Los Angeles' civic, cultural, and environmental resurgence.
"People love CicLAvia because it is incredibly fun, and there is a sense of camaraderie and community that is rare for a city as large and diverse as ours," says Aaron Paley, CicLAvia's co-founder and executive producer. "Los Angeles is undergoing a transformation, and CicLAvia gives people a chance to enjoy the benefits of the city's improved walkability, public transit, and vibrant street life while also changing how we use our streets on a daily basis."
It is initiatives like CicLAvia that drew the APA's attention to Los Angeles. "The stereotype of Los Angeles as a car-addicted, smog-choked megalopolis is outdated," says Kevin Keller, president of the California APA. "CicLAvia is a great example of the creativity, ingenuity, and ambition that Los Angeles brings to the challenges of the 21st Century."
CicLAvia is a nonprofit organization, and it has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for the April 15 event, with the goal of raising $12K by April 5. Organizers believe that Kickstarter's grassroots approach to fundraising presents a unique opportunity to harness the widespread public enthusiasm for CicLAvia and to ensure its continued success, on April 15 and beyond. To contribute, please visit http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cicLAvia/ciclavia-2012.
The first CicLAvia was held on October 10, 2010, and attracted a reported 100,000 participants. Two successful CicLAvias followed in 2011, bringing the estimated total number of CicLAvia participants to more than 350,000 people from all over Los Angeles and the surrounding region. Based on its overwhelming success, CicLAvia has expanded its route from East Hollywood to Boyle Heights to include a north-south extension, stretching south to the African American Firefighter Museum on Central Avenue and north to El Pueblo de Los Angeles and Olvera Street, ending at Cesar Chavez Boulevard.
CicLAvia is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting public health, green transportation, open space, economic development, and community building through car-free public events. With the full support of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, the Los Angeles City Council, Police Department, Fire Department, Department of Transportation, the Department of Public Works, the Department of Water and Power, the Department of Parks and Recreation, and the Los Angeles County of Public Health, CicLAvia is an innovative model for creating new public space and enriching civic life.
CicLAvia is Los Angeles' adaptation of ciclovía, a phenomenon that began more than 30 years ago in Bogotá, Colombia, where it is now a weekly event with 80 miles of car-free streets.
CicLAvia is free of charge and open to all. No reservations are required. For more information, or to download maps, please visit www.ciclavia.org. To keep up with the latest CicLAvia news, become a fan on Facebook or follow them on Twitter.
Support for CicLAvia
CicLAvia is made possible through the generosity of its supporting partners, including the City of Los Angeles; RENEW (Renew Environments for Nutrition, Exercise and Wellness), an initiative of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health; Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro); the U.S. Department of Energy; the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition; and REI.