Bike share program attemps to attract students
A new organization is looking to match hundreds of Waterloo residents with brand new bicycles – as long as they don’t plan to hog them.
Grand River Public Bike Share wants to set up shop and get people pedaling this spring, but says it can only do so if it reaches a minimum of 800 members. They’re currently about halfway to that goal.
Bike-sharing involves a non-profit like Grand River Public leaving bikes at a number of locations in a giving area, and renting them out to its members for a few hours at a time.
Organizers say they’ve targeted Waterloo, where they plan to leave 100 bikes at 10 docking stations, because of its heavy student population.
“Students are pretty much stranded around campus and it gives them a way to have access to different amenities, and to realize there is a city attached to the campus,” says Ashley Faulkner of the A.C.T. student group at the University of Waterloo.
A membership drive was held Tuesday at the school, and representatives will stay on campus all week long.
Waterloo alumnus Dave Moylan is among the bike share evangelists helping with the membership drive. He says he’d have loved a bike-sharing service when he was a student.
“It’s a great campus, but when you’re in a time crunch getting between classes, you want to be able to have an ability to do that,” he says.”
Memberships in the organization can cost anywhere from $5 for a one-day sign-up to $80 for a yearlong commitment – but the first 30 minutes of riding are free under any membership.
Organizers say once Grand River Public Bike Share is up and running in Waterloo, they’ll set their sights on expanding to Kitchener.