Friday, May 22, 2015

Carlsbad Village Business Spotlight- North County Family Bicycles

“Bicycles are the physical embodiment of freedom.”

Carlsbad resident Michael Kimmitt opened North County Family Bicycles, 300 Carlsbad Village Dr. Suite 300SB, just in time for San Diego Bike Month. The timing is apt: Kimmitt sells and repairs bikes designed for everyday riding, the main goal of Bike Month, from commuting to family outings, grocery shopping to beach cruising. Kimmitt stocks quality kid bikes, folding bicycles and cargo bikes. NC Family Bicycles also specializes in bike “make-overs” to transform average bikes to perfect ones that fit customers’ personalized needs and styles of riding. For growing riders, Kimmitt offers the Kids’ Bike Exchange Program, which puts the full retail value of a current bike toward a larger bike for kids, even if the original was purchased elsewhere.  NC Family Bicycles also offers Lifetime Flat Tire Repair.

NC Family Bicycles is dedicated to the idea that bicycles “create freedom, and the right kind of bicycle creates the freedom you’re looking for.” Kimmitt proudly shares that his entire staff bikes to work,  and he chose to open in Carlsbad because, as a resident, he knows the Village is a great place to travel by bicycle. He credits the improved bicycle infrastructure and ideal weather. Located just off Rt. 101 on Carlsbad Village Drive, NC Family Bicycles is the third in a triad of bike shops including Pedego Carlsbad and Ride Cyclery, which each specialize in different types of cycling.

“Bicycles are one of the last consumer machines that an ordinary person can purchase, and can come to thoroughly understand,” Michael remarks. NC Family Bicycles looks forward to assisting Carlsbad residents in their everyday riding, upgrading their current bikes and introducing recent advancements in bikes designed to transport kids and cargo.

Kimmitt also hopes to host local social rides that encourage new riders to build confidence. This weekend, NC Family Bicycles has partnered with the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition as part of Walk + Bike Carlsbad to host Tips for Biking with Kids on Saturday, May 30th, from 1:00PM-2:30PM. Join us or stop in anytime. NC Family Bicycles is open 7 days a week.

Walk + Bike is a partnership led by the City of Carlsbad, Circulate San Diego and the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition to promote walking and biking around Carlsbad, with a special focus on the downtown Village and surrounding areas. The 12-month campaign is funded by a grant from the San Diego Association of Governments and includes events, outreach to schools, business promotions and other activities to get more people walking and biking instead of driving on short trips around town. For more information, visit

Monday, May 11, 2015

The Key to Reaching City Goals is in the Green, Protected Lanes

Written by Andy Hanshaw, Chair of City of San Diego Bike Advisory Committee, Executive Director SDCBC
May is National Bike Month. Across the country, communities will spend the month of May promoting programs and activities to encourage more people to ride bicycles in their daily lives. And why shouldn’t they? The benefits of replacing a short car trip with a bike ride are numerous: studies show it benefits our health, our communities and our local businesses.  
National Bike Month is a good time to assess how far San Diego has come as a bike-friendly region and, while we have great goals for bikes, one thing is clear—we’re not investing in or implementing the strategies that will get us there.
In order to make San Diego a city less impacted by climate change, living with less pollution and maintaining safer streets for everyone, we need to get more people riding bikes. How do we do that? The most obvious, and only first step is to build safe and protected bike infrastructure citywide that connects neighborhoods, businesses, schools, shops and other destinations. Without more bike paths and lanes to make riders feel safe on our streets, our lofty city goals are just that: goals.
Currently, three city initiatives address this goal by encouraging the implementation of safe bike infrastructure and the many proven benefits they bring.
·       First, the City of San Diego wants to reduce impacts of climate change and harmful pollution in our air and environment; a goal everyone agrees is important. Mayor Kevin Faulconer and city council have drafted a Climate Action Plan with goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by calling for a significant increase in the number of people using a bicycle for everyday transportation. The goal of the plan is to get six percent of San Diegans riding bikes for transportation by 2020 and 18 percent by 2035. Currently, that percentage is barely one. How can we get more people riding if people don’t feel safe on the roads outside of a car?
·       Mayor Faulconer has outlined a plan to resurface 1,000 miles of city streets over the next five years, yet resurfacing streets doesn’t specifically include adding safe bike infrastructure. We need to do more than resurface and repave our streets; we need to repurpose them. Repurposing streets means we reconsider how we can use the space on our roads to make them safe for all types of transportation, particularly bicycles and pedestrians.
·       Hearteningly, the Regional Bike Plan includes already-funded bicycle projects planned for several key urban areas in the City of San Diego, including Uptown and North Park/Mid-City. The car-first mentalities we’re used to have caused push back on some of these innovative bike projects, keeping us stuck in an outdated and unsafe environment. Research shows better bike infrastructure benefits businesses and cities in the long run, so what are we waiting for?
While the status quo often has an allure, there are things far scarier than change—the fact that the city hasn’t prioritized the safety of its bicyclists and pedestrians over the relatively small loss of on-street parking that may be needed in order to complete these smart growth, sensible and needed projects. Riding a bike down University Avenue in Hillcrest is both a challenge and terrifying to many. If people don’t feel safe on bikes, no one is going to ride and our city’s progressive and necessary goals will collect dust. It’s as simple as that.
We have already seen firsthand that safe bike infrastructure encourages more people to ride from the recently installed buffered bike lanes on 4th and 5th Avenues. These bike lanes running from Hillcrest to downtown are perfect examples of the continuing change needed to reach climate and bike ridership goals and increase public safety. This model needs to be a part of the citywide strategy for a safer and healthier San Diego.
If we are going to talk the talk, let’s bike the bike. This is a call to significantly increase funding for biking and walking in our transportation budget.
A call to reduce our car emissions and air pollution to slow the damaging effects of climate change in our beautiful city.
And one to make the people of San Diego our biggest priority when the City plans for the 2016 budget and beyond.
Above all, this is a call that can't wait.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

May is Bike Month

May is Bike Month. GO by BIKE!

Join thousands of San Diegans and GO by BIKE for National Bike Month in May. With an average temperature of 71 degrees and more than 1,340 miles of bikeways, the San Diego region is one of the best places in the country for people to commute on two wheels.

Pledge to GO by BIKE on Bike to Work Day, Friday, May 15. Help the San Diego region log 25,000 miles - the equivalent of one trip around the world and one million calories burned! Log your Bike to Work Day trip in TripTracker at to make sure you’re counted toward the goal. Every time you GO by BIKE and log your trips in May, you will be entered to win prizes, including a new bike!

Pledge to GO by BIKE on Bike to Work Day, then roll into a pit stop on your way to work on Friday, May 15 to pick up a free Bike to Work Day t-shirt and snacks. Pit stops will be open from 6 to 9 a.m. Visit the Bike Month web page for a full list of pit stops.

Share how you GO by BIKE with @iCommuteSD on Facebook and Twitter or @SANDAGregion on Instagram before Bike to Work Day for your chance to win prizes, including a new bike! Then, share your Bike to Work Day experience by snapping a picture at a pit stop for an additional chance to win.

Get ready to GO by BIKE with resources on the iCommute website, including the San Diego Regional Bike Map, bike safety and bike security guidelines, and tips on how to take your bike on public transit.

For more information on Bike Month 2015 activities, visit the Bike Month web page, or call 511 and say “iCommute.”

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Carlsbad Village Business Owner Spotlight - Aranelle

Aranelle's owner Michelle Blasena with Julie and Craig Castillo of Carlsbad, and their Bulldog Jac.

If family-owned boutique Aranelle, 2940 State St., isn’t on your radar, make it your  destination this weekend! Owner of Aranelle, Michelle Blasena has developed her business not only as a retail space but also as a “go-to” community space that welcomes dogs and their owners.

This weekend, Saturday April 25th at 9am, Aranelle in partnership with Circulate San Diego will host Wag and Walk, a dog walk through Carlsbad Village. Aranelle will generously provide complimentary drinks and treats for both humans and their dogs upon departure from the storefront. This type of meet up benefits both Carlsbad and Aranelle by creating a community that stays active together.

Aranelle also offers a welcome reprieve indoors, boasting a comfy couch for guests who need to rest their feet. Michelle loves dogs and sees a direct correlation between dogs, physical activity, and a healthy business. “Many dog-walking locals know to stop in for free treats, and local dogs also know to ‘walk’ their owners into the store!” Through Wag and Walk, Michelle continues to build her socially conscious business. Last year, Aranelle organized a fundraiser for Canine Companions for Independence, a non-profit organization that pairs highly trained dogs with people with disabilities. 

Aranelle also sells Alex + Ani jewelry, with portions of the proceeds going to various charities. Look for the bike charm bangle; 20% of the proceeds will be donated to an annual bike-a-thon to raise money for life-saving cancer research and treatment. Aranelle specializes in smaller items that easily fit into a bike jersey or can be worn right out of the store. They also support local designers.

More about Wag and Walk on the MeetUp page.        

If you know of a business in Carlsbad Village that we should spotlight because it exemplifies a local business that promotes walking and biking, please email

Walk + Bike is a partnership led by the City of Carlsbad, Circulate San Diego and the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition to promote walking and biking around Carlsbad, with a special focus on the downtown Village and surrounding areas. Join us and bring your friends and families along for the fun. The 12-month campaign is funded by a grant from the San Diego Association of Governments and includes events, outreach to schools, business promotions and other activities to get more people walking and biking instead of driving on short trips around town. Check back regularly for updates and information about how you can get involved. Walk + Bike Carlsbad is intended to be a model for the region, so let's show them how it's done! 

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Sponsor Spotlight: car2go San Diego

The Bike Coalition would like to thank car2go for continuing their support this year!

car2go has been sponsoring the Bike Coalition since 2011, when they first launched in San Diego. Our partnership seemed like a natural fit, as we are both promoting alternative ways to get around San Diego that are good for people and good for the environment.

Haven't heard of car2go? car2go offers an innovative mobility solution in rapidly growing urban areas via a carsharing network of eco-friendly smart cars around the world. And San Diego was the first location in North America with a 100% all-electric fleet! A flexible and "on demand" mode of transportation, car2go complements existing public transportation by bridging the gaps between the “first and last mile” of a member’s commute. Today car2go is the largest carsharing company in the world with more than 1,000,000 registered members in 29 locations with access to over 12,500 interconnected vehicles across the globe.

car2go San Diego has reached a couple of milestones themselves this year. The company has seen more than 1 million car2go trips since its initial launch in San Diego in November 2011. They also recently added a new fleet of 400 all electric Generation III smartfortwo vehicles and expanded to 45 square miles to accommodate more members and trips. Learn more about car2go and how to join.

Did you know you can fit some folding bikes in a car2go! Combine the two to get around town more easily.

Other benefits:

Charging included
Parking included
Insurance included
Park it almost anywhere within the San Diego Home Area for free
No reservation required
No late fees
Hundreds of cars
Smart-phone friendly

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The San Diego Omnium - Inaugural Two-Day Race

UCSD, SDSU and SD Bicycle Club Host Inaugural Two-Day Race

Partnership brings racing back to UCSD’s campus

The First Annual San Diego Omnium is a joint event between the cycling teams of UC San Diego (UCSD), San Diego State University (SDSU), and the San Diego Bicycle Club (SDBC) that will take place February 28 and March 1. The Omnium—a multi-race competition where each event counts towards a rider’s overall placing—as well as the individual races of which it is comprised, are open to cyclists of all ages and levels. The race organizers are expecting participants and spectators from across Southern California.

A compelling goal of this event is to provide more racing opportunities for cyclists in San Diego County and to increase the participation of collegiate and women cyclists. Proceeds from the event will benefit each of the three clubs and are used to support initiatives to increase cycling participation and awareness.

More information here-

The San Diego Omnium will begin with the Aztec Classic Criterium hosted by SDSU in Claremont on Saturday, February 28 at 7 a.m., continuing with SDBC’s Fiesta Island Time Trial  (FITT) on Sunday, March 1 at 7 a.m., finishing with the Triton Grand Prix on UCSD’s campus near Moore’s Cancer Center at 7 a.m. Spectators are encouraged to attend any of the race segments.

Noncash prizes are being provided by event sponsors Rudy Project, Skratch Labs, San Diego Herbal Medicine, Cafe Virtuoso, and WD-40 BIKE.

Full details of the races, including registration for riders, can be found on the USA Cycling website at

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Carlsbad Village Business Owner Spotlight - Pedego Carlsbad

Pedego Carlsbad is the local bicycle shop in Carlsbad Village and looking forward to celebrating their two-year anniversary serving the community this spring. Located conveniently on Carlsbad Village Drive near the Coastal Highway, 355 Carlsbad Village Drive, they sell and service both traditional bicycles and electric assistance bicycles. Denise Buckingham chose the Village because “it is a quaint place, with a small town vibe. I don’t run into any grumpy people. All the business owners are nice, and of course, we live in Carlsbad.” Denise has seen a large increase to Pedego Carlsbad’s business with the infrastructure improvements in the Village, especially with the increased bike lanes and bike racks.

As a Carlsbad resident, she has seen more and more people choosing to ride bicycles. Three-quarters of her employees ride their bicycles to work, a higher percentage than the year before, as employees see the feasibility and economic benefits to riding in Carlsbad, instead of driving and parking a car.
When asked what could be done to increase walking and biking in the Village, Denise responded, “One of the things we could do to increase it is better maps. People always ask me for maps. It would be great to have a handout with a map and information about biking- where to bike and how to get there. Educate people, to be more aware of biking safely, and biking routes with fewer cars. A lot of residents are unaware of bicycle laws and where is best to ride. With all these bike racks, biking is easy (in the Village).”
They found their customers come from a diverse crowd with an increased demographic coming from a thirties plus crowd, looking for to be active but don’t want to go to the gym. Electric assistance bicycles help riders get over the various hills in Carlsbad. “We promote biking, we do bike tours and I feel we are helping a lot of people.” Recently a couple rented a pair of bicycles and returned engaged!

Pedego Carlsbad has partnered with Linda’s Yogurt, who provides sandwiches for the Couple's Romantic Ride package that Pedego Carlsbad offers. Additionally, they participate with Carlsbad Causes for Community, non-profit of local businesses and Carlsbad residents who collaborate to raise money for various community causes by organizing and implementing events and projects that serve the community. Denise likes that her business is able to serve her community and help promote a healthy lifestyle. She is also looking to increase business partnerships to help grow the connections with other businesses.

Finally, when asked about getting more people riding in the Village, Denise said if she were new to biking she would look for safe places to ride. The San Luis Rey River Trail in Oceanside offers a safe, open space to build biking skills where cars are not a factor. “Some people are nervous about cars, and they are little wobbly, so the trail gives them a place to ride and become comfortable on a bike.” Pedego Carlsbad offers a drop-off service to the trail, so people can rent a bike and build confidence in a less stressful environment. Customers have returned from that experience and later bought bicycles. More people biking in the Village means healthier residents, increased parking for tourists, and a better way to enjoy the Southern California weather.

 With Walk+BikeCarlsbad, the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, in a partnership with the City of Carlsbad and CirculateSD, aim to educate businesses and residents best practices in biking and walking in the Village, and show the economic benefits of bike and walking.
More information about the year long campaign is HERE- on the City of Carlsbad website.