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Eugene To Launch Bike Share Program Next Year

Brian Bull

In roughly a year, the City of Eugene plans to have hundreds of bikes available for short commutes across the Downtown, University District, and Whiteaker areas.  KLCC’s Brian Bull reports.

Officials say they’ve just awarded a contract in their “bike share” venture.  Associate transportation planner Reed Dunbar says while New York-based Social Bicycles is signed on to deliver the equipment for the bike share system, they still need a sponsor.  He says there are more than 100 communities in the U.S. that have a bikeshare system, including Seattle and Portland.  

Credit Brian Bull
Reed Dunbar, Associate Transportation Planner for the City of Eugene.

“About 80 percent of trips taken in urban centers are two miles or less, and most of those are taken by car," says Dunbar.  

"So the city has a lot of objectives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, to promote active transportation so that people are being more healthy.” 

Dunbar adds they also need to raise more money past that provided by a state ConnectOregon grant, the City of Eugene, and the University of Oregon.

“It’s going to be about $2.3 million dollars in capital.  We’ve got just over a million dollars to start with, and then see how it works over time and then be able to expand.”

The City of Eugene’s bike share program is scheduled to start by Halloween of 2017.  The bikes will have GPS systems and special anti-theft features.

Brian Bull is an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Oregon, and remains a contributor to the KLCC news department. He began working with KLCC in June 2016.   In his 27+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (22 regional),  the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from  the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.
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