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San Fernando Valley

Group Commute Ride '97 Makes Case for Pedal Power

May 23, 1997

While many San Fernando Valley residents stumbled for their first cup of coffee Thursday morning, two hardy souls braved the Santa Susana Pass on bikes, negotiating speeding cars and steep hills in the name of commuting.

Thursday marked Group Commute Ride '97.

Sponsored by the 12th Council District Transportation Management Assn., the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the city of Los Angeles, the goal was to increase awareness about bicycle commuting and get cars off the road.

Aaron Hanson, executive director of the 12th Council District Transportation Management Assn., doesn't just preach bicycle commuting and other ways to cut pollution and reduce traffic on congested freeways, he tries to make a difference.

He joined fellow Simi Valley resident John Wood, 36, on the 10-mile trek to the Chatsworth Depot.

Hanson said that while some people may not be able to bike from their homes to work because of the distance, they could cycle to the nearest Metrolink station, board the train to the station closest to work and bike from there.

Twenty-two people did just that on Thursday, taking the train to the Chatsworth Depot, where they grabbed muffins and fresh fruit before heading on bikes to their offices.

Bruce Edwards, 41, biked one mile to the Simi Valley train station, caught the 6:55 a.m. train and stopped in for a continental breakfast at the Chatsworth Depot. He planned to ride 1.5 miles to his job at Deluxe Check Printers in Chatsworth. He said he will try to cycle to work once a week.

"If I get the truck off the road once a week . . . I'll save a little bit of pollution and a little bit on gas," Edwards said.

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