Thursday, May 17, 2007

Rolling Down Santa Clara Street for Bike to Work Day

Dozens of business and community leaders took off on their bicycles from the San Jose Diridon Train Station today, rode down Santa Clara Street, and arrived at City Hall to celebrate Bike to Work Day 2007.
The 8 a.m. ride was a challenge to CEOs, media personalities, and elected officials to be role models for the annual event. At a press conference after the trip, I was pleased to join fellow elected officials in acknowledging everyone who left the car at home and hopped on a bike. Not only does this annual event prevent waves of environmentally unfriendly gases from pouring into our atmosphere, it also shows commuters the ease of biking to work.

As Santa Clara County’s representative on the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, I was happy to see so many commuters finding ways to bike to work, whether they live near or far. The commission, which oversees transportation planning for the entire Bay Area, is always working to ease residents’ commutes. I’m glad that this morning’s Energizer Stations kept bicyclists going strong.

At the press conference, San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed said he wants to increase the number of bike lanes throughout the city. Carl Guardino, president and CEO of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group which issued the challenge to local leaders, highlighted local businesses such as Webcor Builders and Lockheed Martin for setting good examples for their employees by supporting Bike to Work Day. As promised, San Jose City Councilmembers Sam Liccardo and Pete Constant rode a tandem bicycle, and their colleague Pierluigi Oliverio rode his own bike alongside.

Even though the morning commute of Bike to Work Day is over, there are more events still to come. Tonight is the Silicon Valley Bike Coalition’s “Bike Away From Work Bash.” Coalition Executive Director Corinne Winter led the pack this morning, and I will join her at Gordon Biersch in downtown San Jose tonight for the bash. The event goes from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
My biking days are far from over. Not only will I continue to bike to work for the rest of this month for the Team Bike Challenge, I will do so as often as possible in the future. I hope all of you learned easy ways to work exercising into your daily schedule.

Thanks to John Storey for taking the photo of me talking with Sam, Chuck, and Pete.