Urban Velo

BART Lifts Bike Ban Starting July

Bikes on BARTBeginning July 1, the rush-hour blackout period mucking up commutes for Bay Area cyclists will be lifted through December 1. Bikes will be allowed on all BART trains during all operating hours.

This is splendid news for many, who have had to tweak their schedules, sacrifice family time, or forgo their ideal bike + train commuting plans and opt for driving to work around the blackout periods.

“For years people on both sides of the Bay have had to contort their lives simply because they needed to take a bike on BART but couldn’t during commute times. We commend BART for taking the smart steps toward opening up regional travel by bike,” says Leah Shahum, Executive Director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, which has worked alongside BART and the East Bay Bicycle Coalition for years to increase access for bicycles on BART.

The decision comes after two successful experimental periods: On Fridays in August last year, and a weeklong trial period in March.

A survey of BART riders after the March pilot reported 77% were in support of lifting the blackout period.

“Because of the rush hour bike blackouts, I eventually broke down and bought a car to safely get to and from BART as a woman,” says Mira Luna, who commutes between San Francisco and Oakland. “This was after I was robbed walking home from BART at night after work. I am trying to transition back to a bike and BART lifestyle, and lifting the blackouts will help immensely in getting women safely to and from the stations, as walking can be very dangerous at night in many parts of Oakland and some parts of San Francisco.”

Lifting the rush-hour ban will give Bay Area commuters more flexibility and facilitate shorter commutes, though bicycles will still be prohibited in crowded cars, escalators and on the first three cars of the train. Find out more at https://www.ebbc.org/bart.

About Krista Carlson

A regular contributor to the print edition of Urban Velo, Krista Carlson is a cyclist obsessed with bike polo, baking, pickles, and all things bike-y. She is a native Angeleno and is madly in love with the city and everything that makes it the beautiful, crazy place that it is.

View all posts by Krista Carlson →

One Comment

  1. fegJuly 2, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    yay for no more rush hour bike blackouts.

    Boo for the lame bart strike.

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