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Best Practices Video: Bike Center in Santa Monica

8:21 AM PDT on September 9, 2013

When Bike Center opened its doors in Santa Monica in 2011, Metro billed it as the largest bike parking facility in the United States. In two separate facilities, the Center houses 5300 square feet to 360 dedicated spaces and has over 200 members who can access those spaces at anytime.

Yet, it's not just the size of the parking that makes Bike Center such a success story. The Ceneter has become a hub for bike activity, hosting classes, rides and other events. Its location, near the ocean and downtown Santa Monica, allows it to serve tourists, day visitors, and locals. But what might be of greatest interest to other city's looking to invest in bike facilities beyond lanes, it makes money.

The partnership between Bike and Park and the City of Santa Monica is turning into a profitable one. While the two have a revenue sharing agreement, the city wasn't counting on any money from the bike parking company except rent. In 2012, Bike Center wrote a check of over $75,000 in revenue sharing with the city.

Bike Center's model isn't just to be a large bike parking center, but also to have a retail and bike rental component. I've personally spotted Bike Center bikes as far south as Marina Del Rey and as far east as Downtown Los Angeles (during CicLAvia, but still....)

This makes Bike Center the perfect subject for the first of our best practices videos, highlighting some of the best ideas and programs in Southern California.

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