UPDATE: Scott, in the comment section if this post, lamented that the bikes can’t be checked out after 4 p.m. I emailed Bill Davidson who says that because they don’t provide lights for the bikes, they want to have the bikes checked out during the day. He did say they are planning to extend the hours.
Of course the no lights thing does not actually prevent people from riding the bike at night. A bike could be checked out at 4 and ridden all night without lights.
I also asked about how many people have checked out the bikes and Davidson said since school has resumed on average between six and seven bikes are being checked out each day.
The University of Arizona launched a small bike sharing program in November. The aim of the program is to encourage people to ride rather than drive when making short trips from campus.
The program started with 10 bikes, but, “I think there are plans to expand,” Bill Davidson the UA Parking and Transportation marketing manager said.
Check out the video I shot of the checkout process and the bikes:
The program is open to UA students and employees.
The bikes are located in the Tyndall Avenue and 6th Street parking garages. They can be checked out by filling out this form at the cashier’s office in the garage.
There are no fees associated with the program unless you keep the bike longer than 24 hours or if you lose the lock, key or the bike itself.
Davidson said the project cost between $3,000 and $4,000 to start, which included the bikes, locks, racks and other miscellaneous items.
They don’t yet have a solid figure on how often the bikes are being used because of the month-long holiday break. But according to the cashier I checked the bike out from, they have gotten a lot of use.
“The people that have used it, love it,” Davidson said. ” Seems like we have a lot of repeat customers.”
A Parking and Transportation employee is responsible for checking the bikes each day to make sure they are in good shape.
According to Davidson, they haven’t had any bikes stolen or had any major mechanical issues.
They are also considering making the process more electronic so users will no longer have to fill out the form each time they want to borrow one of the bikes.
More details about the program here