PANORAMA CITY (CBSLA) — Hundreds of bikers and walkers and strollers hit Van Nuys Boulevard in the Valley today as CicLAvia took over the street for some car-free, healthy fun.
The seven-hour event started at 9 a.m. in Panorama City, traveled through Arleta and ended in Pacoima.
“I think bicycles let you see the whole world in a different way,” said North Hollywood resident Paula Tiberius.
Pacoima’s mural mile, featuring 31, soon to be 32, murals is a usually a gallery you drive by. On this day with a four-mile stretch closed down from Panorama City to Pacoima, there was time and safe space to stop and soak it in.
“When you’re on a bike, just the scenery. There’s so much stuff that you miss when you’re actually driving,” said Venice resident Javier Covarrubias.
That’s just one of the advantages CivLAvia organizers say you’ll find when you hit the streets on two feet or two wheels instead of four. In eight years the non-profit has sponsored now 26 open street events, closing down major roads around LA city and county for day-long, car-free exploration.
Councilwoman Nury Martinez says the Roscoe corridor has some of the most dangerous intersections in the San Fernando Valley.
“Streets are for everyone — pedestrians, cyclists, cars, people who just want to get to point A to point B and be safe doing so,” said Martinez.
Organizers says their events also reduce ultra fine particles in the air by 20 percent as folks get out of their cars and maybe reconsider bikes or walking as fun, viable ways to get places. Healthy for the environment, healthy for our bodies.
“We’re trying to get a little more activity on our daily regiments,” said Sylmar resident Irma Urzua.
Healthy for families and friends who took the route together.
“I really like spending time with my family,” said Sylmar resident Mia Martinez. “It’s like a really good experience and like memories I’m gonna remember for a really long time.”
“I like to ride my bike,” said Sylmar resident Olivia Martinez.