Tell DDOT where you want a Capital Bikeshare location
DC's Chief Technology Officer Bryan Sivak and his innovative, fast-moving agency have launched a new interactive survey to suggest DC sites for new Capital Bikeshare stations.
This extends the ideas in our experiment last year, where all of you placed a few hundred suggested locations in DC, Maryland, and Virginia on a map. OCTO's version is more sophisticated, asking you to identify "origin" locations where you might want to pick up a bike, and "destination" locations where you'd like to drop one off.
This recognizes the fundamental use case for bike sharing: short-range transportation. Some people use a shared bike to bike around for fun or go use a trail, but the bikes are not generally designed as much for recreation and speed as short-range urban trips. They're also priced that way, free for a half hour with charges beyond.
People probably won't drop off a bike where they got it from. Instead, they'll pick one up somewhere they are, like near home or near a Metro station, and drop it off somewhere they want to go that's nearby. SmartBike users I know use it to travel between Dupont Circle and 14th and U, for example, which aren't very far apart but have no direct transit. Someone living or working in western Montgomery or Upper Northwest might get off the Red Line at Dupont and pick up a bike to go to U Street instead of having to ride all the way through downtown and change trains.
My own location suggestion is 17th between Corcoran and R Streets, near the Safeway, hardware store and many restaurants. That corner has enormous expanses of empty sidewalk, and I was disappointed the 17th Street streetscape reconstruction didn't put some street furniture here. A bike sharing station could utilize some of the space and draw shoppers.
What are the similar locations in your neighborhood? Take the survey!
Speaking of bike sharing, documents from yesterday's TPB meeting reveal more about the region's plans for a TIGER II grant for more bike stations. DC would get 1,000 more bikes for a total of 2,000, Arlington 750 in addition to their planned 117, Montgomery County 200, Fairfax County 100, Alexandria 60, and a still-undetermined number in College Park.
Governments have to match 20% of the total cost with the federal government potentially paying 80%. Arlington gets to count their 117 bikes as their match, but DC is using federal funds for its 1,000 and would therefore have to pay for 20% of the next 1,000 locally.
This totals $10 million in capital costs, the minimum size for a TIGER II grant. TPB staff believe that a minimum-size grant application is most likely to get funded since DOT will be trying to spread the money out more than in TIGER I. Local governments would pay for all operating costs that aren't covered by memberships and usage fees.
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