San Diego’s Bike Coordinator Goes Car-Free

San Diego’s Bicycle Coordinator, Tom Landre, rocking the 60’s aesthetic like no one else can.

At yesterday’s Tour de Fat, the recipient of this year’s car-for-bike trade was none other than our own City Bike Coordinator, Tom Landre. His submission on why he wanted to give up his car is both hilarious and honest – a huge reason he is so loved by all of us.

Three years ago my family moved from Wisconsin to San Diego. We sold everything but our clothes, family photos and my bike. I sold my car to a guy at a store called Fleet Farm the night before our one way flight out of town. We were careful to relocate close to my new job in order to avoid the nightmare of a daily traffic commute. It was a new beginning of life without a car. I was feeling healthy. I had a pretty good run and was loving my bike commute. Proud. After our year lease ran out we bought a house that was 20 miles from work. I believed it was too far to ride my bike back and forth every day and returned to my old ways. I started driving a car to work again. I have to say that this has been an extremely frustrating move and my health and mood have suffered as a result. I believe that a chocoholic would call this a relapse. I can’t stop thinking about the ride to work on my bike. Why did it have to end? I would like to cite the Devil as the culprit. The Devil being Henry Ford.

While Landre made the decision for his own personal reasons, this step sends a huge message to the city and the rest of the world that he is a man who talks the talk and walks…er…rides the bike*. Landre is now in a position to truly understand what the conditions on the streets are like in the city and why our city’s quality of life has suffered so much as we’ve neglected the very simple and elegant bicycle. Transforming our city with our advocacy efforts will result in a more livable city filled with happy San Diegans. We couldn’t be more excited at what our future holds for us.

As many of our readers and supporters have stated, being car-free in San Diego certainly has its challenges. But the benefits that come from experiencing San Diego atop a bicycle saddle far outweigh the downsides. We’re incredibly proud of Tom for taking this step and we look forward to seeing San Diego transform with him at the helm of the City’s Bicycle Program.

* thanks to Everett Neuman for the phrase.