Chicago Announces Large-Scale Bicycle Rental Program

In addition to expanding its network of protected bicycle lanes, Chicago will soon launch an extensive bicycle-renting program.

The city and a company to be chosen will launch a bicycle-sharing rental program next summer, spinning toward a goal of providing 3,000 bikes for short-term use between 300 pick-up and drop-off stations, officials said. The program will be expanded in 2013 and 2014 to include an additional 2,000 bicycles and 200 more docking stations.

It would operate similar to car-sharing programs, like the one managed by I-Go, officials said.

An annual bike-sharing membership would run about $75 and participants will be issued key fobs to check out bikes, Chicago Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein said. Members would pay no additional costs to use the bikes for the first 30 minutes, which is the period anticipated on most trips.

Fees would be charged for additional time and for visitors to the city and other one-time users. Daily, weekly and annual memberships would also be offered, officials said, adding that users would pay with credit cards.

Planning alternatives to automobiles touch on themes in several Roosevelt University Sustainability Studies courses, including SUST 320 Sprawl, Transportation, and Planning, and SUST 310 Energy and Climate Change. For more information on these or any other of our courses, please visit our Sustainability Studies website, call 1-877-277-5978 (1-877-APPLY RU) or email applyRU@roosevelt.edu.

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