Helping to build a more bicycle friendly community.
Harrisburg and Hershey may both have Bike Share programs in the near future, thanks to efforts by Harrisburg Young Professionals (HYP) and Penn State Hershey who are seeking grants to fund the programs. Bicycle South Central PA, a new advocacy group, is assisting with the process.
What is bike share?Basically, Bike Share allows people to borrow bikes on a short- term basis to make brief trips. Usually found in urban environments, Bike Share facilities allow people to get to and from mass transit stations, commercial areas, retail stores, restaurants, and places of employment in an easy, efficient and environmentally friendly way.
How does it work?People join Bike Share programs for a fee of about $75 per year and then have unlimited use of the Bike Share bicycles for short trips during that period. Usually, trips of 30 minutes or less are free, with small additional fees for longer trips. An option to pay by trip is also offered. Bike Share stations are conveniently located throughout the community so people can pick up bikes and drop them off as needed.
What are the benefits of Bike Share?Not only is a Bike Share program an easy, efficient and environmentally friendly form of transportation, but it also enhances community connectivity, promotes a sustainable culture based community and improves regional economic development opportunities.
How would I benefit from using a Bike Share Program?As an example, let’s assume you work in a downtown area where parking is expensive and at a premium. A Bike Share program would allow you to run errands, attend meetings, or go out to lunch without having to use your car. This would allow you more flexibility with choosing transportation alternatives such as riding the bus or carpooling, thereby saving you money that you would otherwise have to spend for fuel and parking. If you do choose to drive your own car downtown, you’ll still be able to use Bike Share get around town without the hassle of moving your car and finding a parking space.
I already have a bike. Why would I care about Bike Share?Bike Share programs increase the number of bicycle riders in the community which increases the interest in making the roads safer for cyclists. For example, within 7 weeks of the launch of New York City’s Bike Share program, users had logged over 1 million trips. And Boston launched one of the first bike share systems in the country, the New Balance Hubway system, which has since grown to 130 stations and more than 1100 bicycles. As a result, Boston has added 82 miles of bike lanes and1500 bike racks and created one of the most successful community bike programs in the country.
How can I help my community to get involved with a Bike Share program?
- Please contact HBC Advocacy Chair Marilyn Chastek at 717-798-4537 firstname.lastname@example.org more information.
- You sign up to be on the HBC advocacy email list to receive updates about all local bicycle advocacy efforts.
- Bicycle South Central PA is now offering memberships to people who want to support local bicycle advocacy efforts.