Spinning our Wheels

Spinning our Wheels is a commuting blog about the challenges of getting around Atlanta by car, bus, MARTA, bicycles and on foot written by transportation reporter David Wickert

Atlanta to initiate bike share pilot program

The popularity of short-term bicycle rental stations is ballooning nationwide, but it's taking a while to get a foothold in Atlanta.

According to a new report, Bike-Share Stations in the U.S. issued this month by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics, there are 46 bike-share systems operating in the country. Nationwide, bike-share systems have been introduced in more than 30 cities since 2010.

READ MORE: Is Atlanta ready for bike sharing?

The launch of a similar program in the city of Atlanta has been delayed for more than a year. Officials say they plan to initiate a pilot program with about 100 bicycles using the chosen vendor, CycleHop, this summer.

The city's Chief Bicycle Officer Becky Katz told 90.1/WABE-FM that the delay in launching the full program initially envisioned was the result of complications with the contract and permitting.

Eventually, the city hopes to have 50 short-term bicycle rental stations with at least 500 bicycles available to rent.

Meanwhile, other areas like Smyrna and the Town Center Community Improvement District in Kennesaw are well ahead of the curve after launching bike share programs last year.

RELATED NEWS: Bike share programs proliferate in Cobb

In addition to being a draw for tourists, bike-share stations can provide a critical last-mile link for urban commuters. Around the U.S., some 2,291 stations are located within a block of intercity bus stations, ferry terminals and passenger rail stations.

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