Bike Share Program
Atlantans have one more way to get around downtown. On June 9, 2016, the Bike Share Program launched with an inaugural bicycle ride through the downtown area. It was an exciting event complete with an emcee and giveaways to all who attended. Of course there are people on both sides of the fence regarding this issue. Some love the idea of bringing a bike share program to Atlanta while others fear it is a recipe for disaster. Who’s right? Only time will tell.
Overview of the Program
The Atlanta Bike Share Program is administered by Atlanta area bike share operator, CycleHop, the Atlanta Department of Planning and Community Development, and Mayor Kasim Reed. Currently, there are 100 bicycles, spread out over 10 stations in downtown Atlanta with several near Georgia State University. The first 20 locations include:
- Broad Street (Broad Street & Mitchell Street)
- Rich Center (MLK Jr. Drive & Pryor Street)
- City Hall (Trinity Avenue & Central Avenue)
- Underground Atlanta (Peachtree Street & Wall Street)
- GSU Arts & Humanities (Gilmer Street & Peachtree Center Avenue)
- GSU Petit Science Center (Piedmont Avenue & Decatur Street)
- Woodruff Park (Auburn Avenue & Park Place)
- Sweet Auburn Market (Jesse Hill Jr. Drive & Coca Cola Place)
- Hardy Ivy Park (Peachtree Street & Baker Street)
- Nelson Street Bridge (Nelson Street & Chapel Street)
The city has plans to install 50 stations with a total of 500 bikes all over the country by the end of 2016. The program has an app that users can install on their smartphones to find the stations closest to them, reserve a bike, and much more. Those who participate in the program can choose from a variety of payment options, including a pay as you go, two monthly plans, and a semester pass.
Intent and Purpose
This initiative actually started way back in 2012, when Mayor Reed made a commitment to the city that by 2016, bicycling would be a vital part of everyday life for people living in Atlanta. The intention of the Bike Share Program is to provide people with additional transportation options. It is aimed at those who work downtown, visitors exploring the city, and students. It is a healthier alternative to riding in a vehicle in that it gets people moving and helps to reduce the number of motor vehicles in the downtown area. In turn, this reduces emissions, lessening harmful air pollution, as well as easing traffic congestion.
Benefits of the Bike Share Program
Any activity that encourages people to get out and get moving has got to have some merit to it. The Atlanta Bike Share Program encourages people to engage in a more active, healthier lifestyle. It also reduces the number of cars that are on the road in the city. This results in a decrease in traffic so commute times for drivers are better and emissions are lessened. Fewer cars on the road could also mean fewer accidents which could have far reaching effects including state statistics and lower car insurance.
Visitors to the city will not have to spend precious time searching for a parking spot in order to go shopping or to a restaurant. They can simply park their bikes and do these things without hassle. Riding through the city on a bike makes the amenities of the city far more accessible than they would be while riding in a car.
Potential Harms of the Bike Share Program
No program is without potential negative ramifications and the Atlanta Bike Share Program is no different. The most logical argument, at first glance, is the potential number of bikes that will be on sidewalks and roadways – and a very likely increase in bicycle accidents as a result. This may mean that new laws must be created in order to protect riders, and existing laws must be enforced more stringently. Good bicycle safety is simple to follow, but not all riders will comply. Motor vehicle operators who are not accustomed to looking out for bicycles may be caught off guard by the influx of bikes on the streets, leading to accidents resulting in injury and even death. In short, Atlanta should take proactive steps to anticipate the potential risks and begin now to combat them.
Call if You’ve Been Injured
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, you may be eligible for compensation. You need an attorney who is on your side and at The Champion Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.C., we will fight for you. Call us today or visit our website to schedule an appointment or chat live with one of our representatives. Get the compensation that you deserve; call today.