Ventura, Calif. – To familiarize the community with a recent City ordinance in Downtown Ventura, the Ventura Police Department and the Downtown Ventura Partners have joined forces to install informative signage across Main Street Moves. The signage serves as a gentle reminder for riders to dismount and walk their wheels within the designated five-block road closure area of Main Street Moves.
“Safeguarding the well-being of our community is a collective endeavor. As the popularity of bicycles, electric bicycles, scooters, skateboards, and other wheeled transportation has increased, so too has the concern for public safety due to high-speed riding in the area,” said Police Chief Darin Schindler. “While we still want the public to enjoy riding, we ask that riders dismount in Downtown Ventura's Main Street Moves area.”
The Ventura Police Department's initial focus will be on educating and guiding the public about the new ordinance, reserving enforcement measures as a last resort. If dangerous behavior persists, riders may be subject to a citation.
Since January 2023, the Ventura Police Department has received dozens of calls reporting bicycle-related accidents and disturbances in the Main Street Moves area. Officers have responded to over 50 incidents involving bikes within Main Street Moves. These incidents include over a dozen collisions, 17 near-miss collisions, and one vehicle vandalism case. Additional collisions, near misses, cases of vandalism, and other incidents have also been documented outside of the Main Street Moves footprint.
“When Main Street Moves was created, it provided a safe and open area for residents and visitors to explore, shop, and stroll in Downtown Ventura,” stated Kevin Clerici, Downtown Ventura Partners Executive Director. "Through collaboration with the Ventura Police and City staff, we are enthusiastic about enhancing public safety and maintaining an inclusive space for all to enjoy."
The ordinance amendment is not applicable to wheelchairs, tricycles ridden by children, or devices operated by people with disabilities, or whose primary purpose is transporting children.
The City of Ventura and the Downtown Ventura Partners both offer bike racks to ensure riders can safely secure wheeled devices while enjoying local restaurants, boutiques, and community activities.
The ordinance amendment restricting the use of bicycles, electric bicycles, and other vehicles within Main Street Moves was adopted by the Ventura City Council on June 26, 2023. The ordinance goes into effect on July 26, 2023.
For more information about Main Street Moves, or to read the ordinance, please visit CityofVentura.ca.gov/MSM.