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Bike Valet Pilot Program Coming To City Heights

Photo caption:

Photo by Kris Arciaga

Beryl Forman, marketing coordinator for the El Cajon Boulevard Business Improvement Association, rides her bike along El Cajon Boulevard, Aug. 22, 2016.

A local community group this summer transformed an empty City Heights lot into a pop-up gathering place for movies, music and games. Now, even bigger changes are coming to the vacant space on El Cajon Boulevard and Central Avenue.

Photo credit: Bikes del Pueblo

Bikes del Pueblo volunteers look on as a man swings a pick ax into the ground of an empty lot at El Cajon Boulevard and Central Avenue in City Heights, Aug. 21, 2016.

Photo credit: Bikes del Pueblo

Bikes del Pueblo volunteers clear foliage along the perimeter of an empty lot at El Cajon Boulevard and Central Avenue in City Heights, Aug. 21, 2016.

Over the next few weekends, volunteers will gather near the Interstate 15 on-ramp to level land, build planters and place posts for a fence and shade structure. Once construction is complete next month, the area will be home to a volunteer-run bike collective, Bikes Del Pueblo. The group will provide maintenance tools and skills to the area's cyclists and host a weekly valet for riders to safely store their bikes when they want to hop on the bus.

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Beryl Forman, marketing and mobility coordinator for the El Cajon Boulevard Business Improvement Association, which leases the lot, said the goal is to create a transit-oriented space.

"We're piloting this bike valet program as a way of hoping to build a culture around busing and biking," Forman said. "The ... lot is right next to a major bus rapid transit corridor."

Forman said she hopes the temporary upgrades will serve as a catalyst to a permanent development once the association's lease concludes.

"So we're actually working with Circulate San Diego and the Bicycle Coalition to put on an event that showcases examples of bike stations around Southern California and drives the interest to see that the city, maybe SANDAG would get behind a project like this and enhance this whole area's environment as a transit-oriented development," Forman said.

Forman said that event will likely take place in October. In the meantime, the association is still seeking volunteers to help with the construction, which began this week.

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Tarryn Mento
Health Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksThe health beat is about more than just illness, medicine and hospitals. I examine what impacts the wellness of humans and their communities.

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