Participants in the 25th annual Bike to Work Day traversed the nine counties of the San Francisco Bay Area on Thursday, May 9.
Misty, windy and cool conditions did not stop tens of thousands of riders from pedaling to work and school, stopping to get treats and commemorative 25th anniversary canvas tote bags at one of 400 energizer stations staffed by volunteers from bike coalitions, local companies and governments across the region.
Nearly 100,000 strong, the bicyclists turned a typical May Thursday morning commute into a huge boost to the environment and their own good health.
Presented by MTC, the Commission's 511.org travel-information service and Alaska Airlines, Bike to Work Day encourages Bay Area residents to leave their cars at home or skip the bus, train or ferry for the day and commute on two wheels.
“I like the energy. That’s the best thing. Everyone cheering the people riding their bikes,” said MTC Chairman Scott Haggerty, who was at the energizer station at the Dublin/Pleasanton BART station early Thursday morning. “I think it really shows that riding a bike is good for your mental health. It’s also about protecting the environment for future generations.”
Napa Supervisor and MTC Vice-Chairman Alfredo Pedroza also participated in the ride.
“Biking to work is definitely something to celebrate,” Pedroza said. “And for a lot of people it’s a celebration that doesn’t have to happen just once a year. If you’re lucky enough to live within a few miles of work, riding a bike is a great option for a daily commute. It’s active, it’s healthy and it’s fun.”
Annabel Chang, Alaska Airlines' vice president of the Bay Area, said the event was a natural fit for the airline.
“As one of the presenting sponsors of Bay Area Bike to Work Day, Alaska Airlines is dedicated to providing affordable, sustainable and convenient travel options,” she said.
Alaska offered the first 500 Mileage Plan members the opportunity to earn enough miles for a free one-way flight between select cities, like San Francisco to San Diego.
“We asked that they post a photo of themselves participating in BTWD 2019 on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook,” Chang said. “It was a great, fun incentive for bike commuters to get out and ride with us.”
Bike to Work Day is the largest event in the Bay Area’s celebration of May’s National Bike Month, but there are many other events and activities held during the month. Running May 1 to 31, the month-long Bay Area Bike Challenge is a friendly competition that encourages participants and companies to ride individually and as teams to get more people to commute by bicycle. Close to 3,000 riders from across the nine counties of the Bay Area have been pedaling and racking up miles and virtual prizes every day. More information is available at lovetoride.net/bayarea.
In addition to MTC (the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area), 511 (the region’s traveler information system) and Alaska Airlines, Bike to Work Day 2019 receives regional support from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD), Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), Clif Bar, Ride Report and Exodus Travel, as well as from many sponsors at the local level. Bike to Work Day’s media sponsor is NBC Bay Area-KNTV/Telemundo 48. Prizes for the Bike Commuter of the Year winners were donated by the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) and Mike’s Bikes. The event is made possible through the cooperation of thousands of volunteers, county congestion management agencies, local jurisdictions, local bicycling coalitions and MTC.
For photos from the day, visit the photo gallery on MTC’s website.
In addition to the nearly 100,000 riders these MTC Commissioners, local politicians, and notables also participated in BTWD 2019:
- Alameda County Supervisor and MTC Chairman Scott Haggerty
- Napa County Supervisor and MTC Vice Chair Alfredo Pedroza
- Los Altos City Council Member Jeannie Bruins
- Marin County Supervisor Damon Connolly
- Orinda City Council Member Amy Worth
- San Francisco Mayor’s Appointee Nick Josefowitz
- San José Mayor Sam Liccardo
- Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese
- Sonoma County Supervisor David Rabbitt
Additional Elected Local Officials
- Alameda Mayor Marilyn Ezzy Ashcraft, Vice Mayor John Knox White and Councilmember Malia Vela
- Albany Councilmember Nick Pilch
- Benicia Mayor Elizabeth Patterson
- Berkeley Councilmembers Lori Droste, Rashi Kesarwani and Rigel Robinson
- Burlingame Mayor Donna Colson, Vice Mayor Emily Beach, and City Councilmember Mike Brownrigg
- Contra Costa County Supervisor John Gioia
- Cotati Mayor John Dell’Osso
- Dublin Vice Mayor Melissa Hernandez
- Emeryville Mayor Ally Medina and City Councilmembers John Bauters, Scott Donohue and Dianne Martinez
- Fremont Vice Mayor Raj Salwan
- Hayward Councilmember Sara Lamnin
- Healdsburg Mayor David Hagele
- MidPeninsula Open Space Regional District Board member Yoriko Kishimoto
- Millbrae Vice Mayor Reuben Holober
- Napa County Supervisors Ryan Gregory, Belia Ramos and Brad Wagenknecht
- Napa Mayor Jill Techel and Vice-Mayor Scott Sedgley
- Oakland Councilmembers Nikki Fortunato Bas, Noel Gallo, Dan Kalb, Loren Taylor and Sheng Thao, and School Board Member Aimee Eng
- Petaluma Mayor Teresa Barrett, Councilmembers Dave King and Kevin McDonnell
- Piedmont Councilmember Tim Rood
- Richmond Mayor Tom Butt
- San Francisco Mayor London Breed; Supervisors Vallie Brown, Sandra Lee Fewer, Matt Haney, Rafael Mandelman, Gordon Mar, Ahsha Safai, Catherine Stefani and Shamann Walton; and BART Director Janice Li
- San Anselmo Councilmember Brian Colbert
- San Bruno City Councilmember Marty Medina
- San Jose City Councilmember Johnny Khamis
- San Leandro Councilmembers Ed Hernandez and Corina Lopez
- San Mateo County Supervisor Dave Pine
- Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez and Donald Rocha, Chief of Staff for Supervisor Dave Cortese
- Santa Rosa Vice Mayor Chris Rogers
- Sebastopol Vice Mayor Patrick Slayter and Councilmember Sarah Glade Gurney
- Suisun City Vice Mayor Mike Segala
- Walnut Creek Mayor Pro Tem Loella Haskew
Notable Regional Leaders
- Belmont Associate Engineer Justin Lai
- Friends of Caltrain Adina Levin
- Napa County Office of Education Superintendent Barbara Nemko
- Napa Valley Unified School District Superintendent Rosanna Mucetti
- Napa Valley Transportation Authority Executive Director Kate Miller
- Parents for Safe Routes Jen Wolosin
- Peninsula Open Space Trust member Rachael Faye
- Redwood City Senior Transportation Coordinator Jessica Manzi
- SamTrans Principal Planner, Dan Provence and Planner Gwen Buckley
- San Francisco County Transit Authority Director Tilly Chang
- San Francisco Environment Director Debbie Raphael
- San Francisco Fire Department Chief Jeannine Nicholson
- San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Director Ed Reiskin
- San Francisco Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru
- San Jose VTA General Manager/Chief Executive Officer Nuria Fernandez
- San Mateo County Bike and Pedestrian Advisory Committee Member Bill Kelly
- Santa Rosa Junior College Board of Trustees Jordan Burns
- Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition Executive Director Shiloh Ballard and Director of Policy and Advocacy Emma Shlaes