OAKLAND, Calif. … The 22nd annual Bike to Work Day rolled through the nine counties of the San Francisco Bay Area on Thursday, May 12. Morning counts tallied across the counties of the region showed an increase of over nine percent compared to 2015. Adding together those who stopped at Energizer Stations with those who just pedaled by, rider count was well over 100,000 participants for the day. Refreshed and cheered on by thousands of volunteers at over 400 Energizer Stations throughout the region, participants turned a normal Thursday morning commute into a celebration on two wheels.
“Every day can be Bike to Work Day,” said Santa Clara County Supervisor and MTC Chair Dave Cortese. “For this reason, MTC is committed to identifying reliable sources of funding to improve pavement conditions on our local streets and roads — making them safer for bike commuters to travel on.”
Energizer Stations located near bike lanes, trails, transit stations and employment centers were crowded with bike commuters sipping coffee, fueling up on Clif bars and other goodies, and collecting their reusable, commemorative 2016 Bike to Work Day bags.
Local politicians — including many MTC Commissioners — demonstrated their support of the festivities by joining commuters on their own two wheels and many helping at Energizer Stations. Elected officials included Alameda Mayor Trish Herrera Spencer; Albany Councilmember Nick Pilch; Davina Hurt, Belmont Councilmember and Commute.org Board of Directors; Burlingame Councilmember Emily Beach; Cloverdale Councilmember Carroll Russell; Contra Costa Supervisor John Gioia; Foster City Councilmember Sam Hindi; Millbrae Councilmember Reuben Holliber; Oakland Mayor and MTC Commissioner Libby Schaaf; Oakland Councilmembers Annie Campbell-Washington, Noel Gallo, Abel Guillen and Dan Kalb; Piedmont Councilmember Timothy Rood; San Francisco Supervisors London Breed, Malia Cohen, Mark Farrell, Jane Kim, Eric Mar, Aaron Peskin, Katy Tang, Scott Wiener (also an MTC Commissioner) and Norman Yee; San José Mayor and MTC Commissioner Sam Liccardo; San José Councilmember Raul Peralez; San Leandro Mayor Pauline Cutter; Santa Rosa Councilmembers Chris Coursey and Gary Wysocky; Sebastopol Mayor Sarah Glade Gurney; Sebastopol Councilmember Patrick Slayter; Solano County Supervisor and MTC Commissioner Jim Spering; and Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane.
Other notable regional leaders included MTC Executive Director Steve Heminger; Jessica Manzi, Redwood City Community Development; Matthew Self, Chair, Redwood City Complete Streets Committee; Ed Reiskin, Director of SF Municipal Transportation Agency; Mohammed Nuru, Director of San Francisco Public Works; Debbie Raphael, Director of San Francisco Environment; Sonoma County Transportation Authority Executive Director Suzanne Smith; Mark Simon, Senior Advisor, Strategic Initiatives, Caltrain; and Jeremy Lipps, Social Media Manager, Caltrain/Samtrans; and VTA Executive Director Nuria Fernandez.
“Exercise is one of the key ingredients to living a healthy lifestyle,” said Dr. Eshwar Kapur, Sports Medicine Specialist at Kaiser Permanente, South San Francisco. “It promotes better sleep, helps to reduce stress, helps control weight and creates a general sense of well-being. As thousands of people across the Bay Area discovered today on Bike to Work Day, cycling is a fun and enjoyable way to make sure we build exercise into our busy schedules.”
While the Bay Area’s celebration of Bike to Work Day is over, Bike Month events continue through May 31, including Team Bike Challenge — a friendly competition that encourages participants to increase their personal bicycling mileage. The possibility of earning much-coveted bragging rights keeps participants pedaling. Competition is currently hot and heavy, with all sights set on getting to the top of the list by May 31!