Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator Expands Free Zero-Emissions Shuttle Service in Leimert Park

Funding secured by Senator Sydney K. Kamlager also supports creation of LACI satellite green workforce training site in South LA

LACI also announces call for new community pilot program partners for next round of clean mobility projects


Los Angeles, CA – In partnership with Senator Sydney Kamlager (D-30), community groups, and local businesses, LACI extended and expanded the Leimert Park neighborhood EV shuttle pilot and announced a request for information to establish a LACI-led satellite green workforce training site in South LA. As of January 31, shuttle operations were expanded to Monday through Friday from 8am to 6pm, Saturday from 10am to 8pm, and Sunday from 9am to 7pm.

“The success of LACI’s Leimert Park EV ride-share pilot with Circuit is an important and impactful demonstration of how communities can model clean energy solutions and support underserved communities with electric transportation,” said California State Senator Sydney Kamlager. 

Joe and Celia Ward-Wallace, Co-Founders of South LA Cafe and 501c3 The SLAC Foundation remarked, “We have been so grateful to have the shuttle in our community! It has allowed local residents to travel to and from our food distribution, The South LA Grocery Giveaway, which takes place every Wednesday and provides food for over 1000 people. Together our partnership has provided access and equity to those who need healthy food options the most.”

With State funding secured by Senator Kamlager, LACI is also identifying a satellite green workforce training hub in South LA for electric vehicles (EVs), e-shuttles, e-bikes, and EV charging stations, and diagnostic tools for hands-on learning, in partnership with LACI startup  ChargerHelp! in anticipation of launching this training program in the fall of 2022.


More on EV Shuttle Pilot

The EV shuttle pilot in Leimert Park was created based on community group ideas and needs submitted to LACI through the Zero Emissions Mobility and Community Pilot Project Fund, with the goal of piloting clean and affordable transportation solutions in communities that are most heavily impacted by poor air-quality and lack adequate transportation. LACI has partnered with community groups in three different neighborhoods in the City of Los Angeles, with the added goal of connecting local small businesses with emerging startup technology and transportation options in Leimert Park. Ride On! Bike Shop and South LA Cafe–which both have participated in LACI’s Founders Business Accelerator–have been key partners in the pilot.

The EV shuttle pilot with LACI startup Circuit (which also participated in LACI’s Market Access program tied to making the LA region the epicenter of cleantech and zero emissions mobility innovation) offers both flag down and on-demand mobile app service within the local designated coverage. The program was re-upped in response to early community adoption and high demand, with more than 2,300 (non-unique) riders taking 1,750 trips since pilot inception. Feedback from users and residents was collected to develop the initial service and to implement the new schedule changes to better meet travel needs.  

LACI selected and deployed program technologies after deep community engagement in the Greater Leimert Park Village Crenshaw Corridor community that included outreach to local elected officials, business owners, and grassroots organizations to assess their greatest transportation needs. The program was initially developed in partnership with a number of Leimert Park community partners including: We Love LeimertKOAS Networks / SankofaCity, Ride On! Bike Shop / Co-op, the Greater Leimert Park Village Crenshaw Corridor Business Improvement District (GLPVCC)Community Build Inc.Destination Crenshaw, and the Community Economic Development Corporation (CEDC) / Institute for Maximum Human Potential.

“Creating sustainable clean mobility programs that work for communities is at the very heart of LACI’s ZEV pilot program initiative,” said Matt Petersen, President and CEO of LACI and Chair of its Transportation Electrification Partnership. The success of programs like the Leimert Park EV ride-share pilot demonstrate the value of EV transportations solutions for  community members and a return on investment when projects focus on cleaning our air, supporting the region’s emerging cleantech industry and ensuring that everyone has equitable access to a zero-emissions future. We are proud to be leading equity-based solutions that give people transportation options while reducing L.A.’s carbon emissions.”  

“Los Angeles is leading the path forward toward zero emissions, ensuring that the future leaves no one behind,” said Daniel Kramer, Vice President at Circuit. “LACI’s pilot programs allow us to demonstrate in real time how to make zero-emission mobility options work while meeting important needs for local communities.”


More on Green Workforce Training Satellite Location

The training program is designed to create pathways for underrepresented groups to earn high-road green job opportunities. LACI will recruit trainees from the community to participate in their workforce development programs, and place graduates in paid internships where they can apply their new skills with local partner companies. 


Seeking New Community Pilot Project Partners

LACI is also looking to partner with additional community organizations across Los Angeles to continue the expansion of pilot programs like the one in Leimert Park.

Another Request for Information has been issued for applications from interested community groups who want to partner with LACI to incubate local zero emission and other cleantech pilots. LACI has recently secured state funding from the California Workforce Development Board to support an additional two to three deployments of zero emission transportation, energy/transportation nexus, and clean energy pilots focused in disadvantaged communities. This RFI will determine the next partners and location for the pilot deployments, which will be designed to increase access to affordable clean transportation and/or clean energy, support local economic and workforce development, reduce GHG emissions, and improve air quality and health for communities. Funding for the pilots will range between $100k – 250k. 


About The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI)

LACI is creating an inclusive green economy by unlocking innovation by working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies; transforming markets through partnerships with policymakers, innovators, and market leaders in transportation, energy and sustainable cities; and enhancing communities through workforce development, pilots, and other programs. Founded as an economic development initiative by the City of Los Angeles and its Department of Water & Power (LADWP), LACI is a non-profit recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world by UBI. Learn more at laci.org.


Media Contact

Regan Keller, Antenna Group

laci@antennagroup.com | 415-977-1933

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