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Bike sharing gets a push in Atlanta's Westside neighborhoods

Relay Bike Share currently has 100 bikes for rent at hubs in Downtown Atlanta and Midtown, but expects to have 500 bikes across the rest of the city by the end of the year.

The areas will include hubs in Westside neighborhoods such as Vine City, AUC (Clark Atlanta University, Spelman and Morehouse), the West End and English Avenue.

To help promote bike sharing on the Westside, several community organizations are using grant funding to hire and train "Westside Bike Share Champions." The 10 Champions will help manage community outreach and education on bike sharing. Applications are due by Sept. 19.

In case you haven't heard, Relay is a bike share program that offers bikes for rent at hubs across the city. Once you join, you can find and reserve a bike on the mobile app or enter your member number on the keypad of the bike you want to use.

When prompted, you enter your pin-code and remove the bike. During your ride, you can make quick stops by using a "hold" button to secure the bike to any bike rack. Return the bike to any hub or a bike rack within 100 feet of a hub, or pay a fee to leave the bike at any public bike rack in the city.

Bikes cost $8 for 60 minutes or you can get monthly plans starting at $15 or there is a pass for students in university areas that costs $25 per semester.

The Champions program is a partnership of the City of Atlanta, Atlanta Bicycle Coalition, WeCycle, Urban Perform, Red, Bike & Green Atlanta, and Relay Bike Share, made possible by $67,000 in grants from PeopleForBikes.

It is designed to offer Westside residents paid training and work while also promoting the idea of bike sharing as a viable mode of transportation and a healthy form of recreation.

Community-based nonprofits and businesses will recruit and train the Champions teaching them to conduct outreach at community meetings and events as they raise awareness and interest in bike sharing.

Applications for the Champion program are available online at . Applications are due September 19 by 5 p.m.

Interviews will take place the week of September 26 in the evening. Those selected to participate will take part in 35-40 hours of training from October 7-9 and 10-15. Childcare will be provided for those who need it and provisions will be made to make training convenient for all participants.

Those selected will receive up to $4,000, a bike share pass and MARTA cards as compensation for the duration of the position.

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About the Author

Nedra Rhone has been a features reporter with the AJC for 10 years. She’s written about everything from fashion to food to news.