New Bike Share Program Taking Shape
A bike sharing system for downtown Toledo has established a name – Tolego – and a logo, and the custom bikes will arrive soon. Jamie Christain, the Toledo representative of Gotcha Bikes which is managing the system, made a presentation to the TMACOG Pedestrian & Bikeways Committee September 18.
Christian said that initial rollout of the bike share program will be around downtown Toledo although he hopes that the system will grow over time to include the entire region. The bikes will be staged in hubs at several locations. A downtown worker wanting to ride a bike to lunch can use a phone app to find the nearest bike and reserve it. At the bike hub, the rider enters his or her membership information on a panel on the bike, unlocks it, and rides to a restaurant. At the restaurant, the rider puts the bike on hold (out of service but not available to anyone else) and locks it up to any normal bike rack or secure spot. A lock is incorporated into the bike design. When lunch is over, the rider unlocks the bike, puts it back in service, and rides it back to the hub. There are also options for one-way trips and for people who don’t have access to computers or smart phones.
Payment plans will include pay-as-you-go, a monthly fee, or an annual fee. A local company will be in charge of distributing the bikes to hubs, checking the batteries on the information panels, and basic bike maintenance.
See a sample of a Gotcha Bike at the walking center at Wildwood Metropark. See more information at www.toledobikeshare.com or http://gotchabike.com/tolego.