Want To Beat Traffic To Dodger Stadium? We Have Your Guide To Biking To The Park
Dodger Stadium is among America's most iconic ballparks — one surrounded by a 16,000-space parking lot that opens three hours before games to accommodate fans who drive.
But parking spots for 2022’s home opener start at $25, and leaving after games is a traffic-clogged nightmare. So why not get to the game by bike?
It's not a particularly popular option in car-crazed L.A. More than 10 Angelenos interviewed by LAist on a recent spring afternoon in Echo Park had never given it a shot.
“That hill, up to the stadium, is a no-go for biking,” Cassie Spear said.
“Never biked to Dodger Stadium,” Mel Grigsby said. “Especially on game day, it’s too crowded. I don’t even like driving to Dodger Stadium.”
Others said it was a long ride from their homes in East L.A. or Koreatown, or that they’d feel safer if there were more bike lanes or less traffic on the route. Many in Echo Park live close enough to walk to games.
Some simply don’t own a bike. “It’s either Uber or car,” Art Silva told LAist while sporting a crisp Dodger cap and feeding ducks in Echo Park.
But it is possible to bike. Dodgers pitching coach and former Oakland A’s manager Bob Geren has commuted from Pasadena to Dodger Stadium by bike. And the stadium has added several bike racks in recent years. Taking a cue from Geren, I recently made the journey, arriving about 90 minutes before an early April 2022 exhibition game against the Angels.
Getting To The Game
It’s not a tough ride for someone who bikes regularly, but on a warm day you’ll likely work up a sweat. There are several routes that will take you to the ballpark.
From the Chinatown Gold Line station, it was a relatively quick ride to Gate E on the east side of the stadium. The route includes multiple hills, first on College Avenue and then on Stadium Way. Bike lines appear and then vanish, so it may be difficult for cyclists who aren’t used to contending with traffic.
It’s also possible to ride from Union Station. The trip “takes between 20 to 30 minutes depending on how eager you are to burn calories for your Dodger Dog(s),” said the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition’s Eli Kaufman. He recommended taking Cesar Chavez Avenue to the Sunset Gate at Dodger Stadium. Kaufman is an advocate for biking to the ballgame, and called the trip on two wheels “a fun and cost-saving way to set up a day at the park.”
The trip from Echo Park to the stadium takes just 10 minutes. The route is split between bike lanes on Sunset Boulevard and riding in traffic. The ride boasts a sizable hill on Vin Scully Avenue (that’s the one Spear called “a no-go for biking”). Once you summit it, you can breeze through Sunset Gate A — there’s no need to pay for parking as a cyclist or pedestrian at any of the gates.
You can also arrive from the north, perhaps from the Los Angeles River bike path, taking Stadium Way. But the car traffic on parts of that route can be intense.
Once you arrive, you’ll need to park your bike for the game.
In this regard, the Dodgers are decidedly behind their rivals, the San Francisco Giants, who offer valet bicycle parking at games, in addition to bike racks.
Dodger Stadium used to have bike racks in just a single location, but these days, racks are fanned out around the stadium. The team’s official parking map shows bike racks in seven locations, so cyclists should be able to find a spot near their entrance. “It looks like people are using them,” LAist’s Sharon McNary reported about the racks in 2019.
But on my recent trip, there wasn’t a single other cyclist near the stadium, or any bikes locked up two separate racks, even as the parking lots began to fill up.
With an entire season of Dodger baseball ahead, fans might consider this cheaper, time-saving trek to Chavez Ravine. And if the preseason predictions are correct, there could be opportunities to bike to Dodger Stadium deep into October.