L.A.'s Bike-Sharing Program Will Debut In DTLA With 1,100 Bikes

It's officially happening: Metro just approved the first contract for our long-awaited bike-sharing program. The $11 million contract will bring 1,100 bikes to downtown Los Angeles in 2016.

Bike-sharing programs allow you to check out a bike from a kiosk for a short trip before dropping them off and docking them at another kiosk. These bikes will be available 24/7 and you will be able to check on availability with a smartphone app, according to Metro's blog The Source. They're popular in other cities, like the Twin Cities, Anaheim and New York, which got CitiBikes in 2012.

Metro Board Member and City Councilman Mike Bonin released a statement saying that he's happy we're no longer behind the curve: "I am tremendously excited that we are moving forward with bike share in L.A. and that we are focusing on developing a system that will connect our neighborhoods through interoperable systems. It defies logic that snowy cities around the country have had bike share for years, but a city like Los Angeles, with our wonderful weather and communities begging to be biked, still hasn’t gotten this done yet."

The inaugural roll-out of bikes will include 65 stations from Union Station to USC. Locations include other Metro stops, the Los Angeles Convention Center, Grand Central Market, Pershing Square and the Arts District. Bicycle Transit Systems Inc. won the contract.

Mayor Eric Garcetti who also sits on the Metro Board released a statement praising the program: "We are building new ways for Angelenos to get around. Riding a bike is another option people can use to commute to work or explore the region. Today marks the first step in Metro's plan to bring bike share to cities across the county."

The next hub in the bike-sharing program could be Pasadena in 2017. The ultimate goal is to make 4,000 bikes available in 10 communities around the county.