Bike Trains are an awesomely powerful tool for getting people riding when there isn’t great bike infrastructure in place – or to fill the need for education/encouragement. Unfortunately it’s a deceptively simple idea that’s easy to implement poorly. The #1 problem a new project will face is going to be: resources from volunteer burn out to the cost of insurance. Aligning with a major organization (like a hospital or university) can help solve many of these issues.
Need help getting started? After 4+ years of running the largest bike trains program, in one of the largest and most diverse cities in the world, we’ve seen it all and evolved.. a few times. Like any cultural program, it’s important to be sensitive to many factors and adjust accordingly. There’s a bunch of ways we can help make that happen:
- Consulting. Just ask!
- Bike Trains Summit
- Private Program development.
- Conductor Training. (the DIY way to figure it out for individuals)
Sure, if we all lived in Amsterdam with world class bicycle infrastructure, bike share and a culture of bicycle-friendly drivers, Bike Trains might be a niche pursuit. For American cities and towns who struggle to increase daily ridership, despite few or no protected bike lanes, frequently in substandard car lanes with drivers who may not expect or respect a cyclist – the collective power of encouragement, education and safety in numbers can have a transformative effect.
Bike Trains are cost effective and extremely fast to implement, develop and maintain. As a social endeavor that is dependent on a network of volunteers, L.A. Bike Trains offers consulting to help get other cities off the ground while dealing with liability, training, promotion, diversity, civic, logistical and communication issues.