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THE BIG FIX

How to get from here to there. A bus with a view? A monorail? Your own two feet?

Lace up and head out

December 27, 2007|Charlie Hoover | Charlie Hoover is co-owner of Phidippides Encino.

I have experimented with various methods of traveling the eight miles to and from my sporting goods store in Encino. When I run to work, it only takes me about 25 minutes longer than when I drive. When I ride my recumbent bicycle, I beat my driving time by about 15 minutes.

For years, my partner made his 26-mile round trip over the Santa Monica Mountains to our shop by running on fire roads, and arriving not much later than someone making the drive on the 405. Other members of our staff bike in occasionally from as far away as Santa Clarita. Besides enjoying a pleasant commute, we also stay fit, save money and pollute less.

Not everyone can or wants to run or bike to work. But more people would be willing to try if Los Angeles' infrastructure was more bike and pedestrian friendly. Cities such as Portland, Ore., have a well-developed system of bike paths and dedicated bike lanes, making commuting easy and safe for thousands of cyclists, runners and walkers. Let's make that a model for L.A.

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