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Bike-sharing system

The City of Portland is working on a bike-sharing/rental system. The system will put card-activated rental bikes in kiosks downtown.

Read all our special coverage on this story below.


NW Portland is about to become one of the best bike-share areas on the continent

Posted on June 14th, 2016 at 11:26 am.

NW Portland Week day 2-36.jpg
A bikeway crossroads: NW 14th and Johnson.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

Portland’s most underperforming bike quadrant is about to get a very big investment.

Despite their proximity to jobs, northwest Portland residents are significantly less likely to bike-commute than residents of inner southeast, north or northeast Portland. And that’s exactly why Portland’s Biketown system is putting its biggest bet on northwest.

Today’s announcement of a final station map comes on the very same day that a state committee will start debating the fate of the first major bike project for northwest Portland in many years, arguably the key to getting inexperienced bike users comfortably across Interestate 405: the proposed Flanders Crossing bridge.

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Should you buy a Biketown membership right now? Here’s the calculation

Posted on June 14th, 2016 at 7:29 am.

hello biketown is here
There are a few scenarios to consider.
(Image: BIKETOWNpdx.com)

Now that we finally know the prices to use Portland’s new public bike sharing system, it’s time to start making a decision: What do you want to commit to?

Even broken out into $12 monthly payments, $144 a year is a pretty big commitment, though far cheaper than, say, an annual TriMet pass ($1,100). And unlike TriMet or most U.S. bike sharing systems, month-to-month passes apparently won’t be an option with Biketown. You can pay $12 for 24 hours or $12 each month for a year; nothing in between. Or you can put up $2.50 for a single ride any time you need one.

So what’s the best option for you? Here’s a short BikePortland guide to the $12-per-month decision.

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Portland’s bike-sharing system just started selling memberships at $12 a month

Posted on June 14th, 2016 at 6:31 am.

Screenshot 2016-06-14 at 6.21.52 AM
(Image: BIKETOWNpdx.com)

After 10 years, it’s happening.

Annual memberships in Portland’s city-owned, Nike-sponsored public bike sharing system went on sale at 6:20 a.m. Tuesday, and the 1,000-bike system to be known as Biketown will get one of North America’s largest-ever bike share launches on Tuesday, July 19.

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Community Cycling Center gets $75,000 grant to offer cheaper bike share memberships

Posted on May 11th, 2016 at 10:37 am.

Portland bike share launch-11.jpg
Coming soon. And cheaper for some.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

When Portland made its first attempt at bike share in 2011, concerns about equity gave local leaders pause. So when the City rebooted the idea they made sure it would be accessible to as many Portlanders as possible; rich and poor.

Now the nonprofit Community Cycling Center will add to those efforts thanks to a $75,000 grant they just earned from the Better Bike Share Partnership, a collaboration between the City of Philadelphia, the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, People for Bikes, and the National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO). The program, “strives to increase the accessibility and use of bike share in underserved communities.” The CCC’s award is one of nine grants totaling $532,000 that were announced today.

The CCC’s grant funding will be put toward a grassroots outreach and education effort that will start when the BIKETOWN bikes hit the streets in mid-July. The marketing initiative will be aimed at Portlanders living on low incomes. “In addition to offering very low-cost memberships through workshops, they will also use community feedback to improve and guide the system through launch and its first year of implementation,” reads a press release about the grants.

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Portland bike share deal ups pressure for downtown bikeway project

Posted on January 8th, 2016 at 9:25 am.

elk squeeze
The bike route west from the Hawthorne Bridge.
(Photo: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

This July, when downtown workers start grabbing big orange bikes to head across the river for lunch at Olympia Provisions, many will make an unpleasant discovery: Downtown Portland has hardly any bike infrastructure.

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Rep. Blumenauer unveils ‘Bikeshare Transit Act’ to provide funding certainty

Posted on January 7th, 2016 at 1:30 pm.

Blumenauer at the Summit-2
It’s transit, so let’s fund it as
such says Blumenauer.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Not wanting to be left out of massive bike news in his hometown, U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer has just released details on his latest legislative idea: the Bikeshare Transit Act. The legislation is meant to provide stability and “additional flexibility to use federal funds for bikeshare programs.”

Blumenauer wants to make it easier for bike share systems to operate past their initial start-up funding. In Portland’s case, we received a $2 million federal grant for bike share back in 2011. But that money was only enough to start planning. To actually put a system on the ground would take millions more — not to mention an annual operating and maintenance budget of $1.5 to $2 million. With cities under pressure to not spend any local money on bike share, that means they’ve had to hope and pray for big private sponsors. Portland spent years trying to court a suitor before inking their $10 million deal with Nike.

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Portland inks $10 million “Biketown” deal with Nike as title sponsor of bike share system

Posted on January 7th, 2016 at 9:01 am.

Portland bike share launch-2.jpg
Left to right: PBOT Director Leah Treat, Community Cycling Center CEO Mychal Tetteh, Nike VP Jorge Casimiro, and Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

At the Nike factory store in northeast Portland this morning, the City of Portland announced that Nike Inc., has signed on as the title sponsor of Portland Bike Share (here’s the official announcement). The system is now known as Biketown (pronounced “bike” not “bikey”).

The deal is worth $10 million and will last for five years. PBOT had previously said they needed $2 to $8 million to launch the system, so this is a huge deal for the city.

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NikeBikes? Portland and Nike set to announce “major agreement” on bike share

Posted on January 6th, 2016 at 5:16 pm.

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Nike Bikes?

UPDATE 1/7 at 9:00 am: See this story for the latest on Nike’s big sponsorship deal with PBOT.

The City of Portland says they’ll make an announcement tomorrow about a “major bike share partnership” with none other than Nike, Inc.

The sports equipment juggernaut is based in nearby Beaverton and has lots of ties to the Portland area.

We’ll have more on this story as soon as we can. Below is more in a statement from PBOT:

On Thursday, January 7, 2016, Commissioner Steve Novick will join Jorge Casimiro, Vice President of Global Community Impact for NIKE, Inc., and Leah Treat, Director of the Portland Bureau of Transportation, to announce a significant new partnership in support of Portland’s bike share system.

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Bike-share membership with a food-stamp card? Portland hasn’t shut the door

Posted on December 2nd, 2015 at 11:44 am.

trail card
An Oregon Trail card might work as an ID for a
bike share system, even if no charge were made.
(Photo: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

Update 1:25 pm: This article was based on a Nov. 2 interview, but we didn’t check with the city again before publishing; we should have. Since Nov. 2, the city has done new research and is also speaking about the issues differently. We’ve changed the headline to reflect that. See the bottom of the post for more information.

Making bike-share systems useful to poorer people has been one of the thorniest problems in North American bike sharing.

One reason is probably that you need a credit or debit card to access most bike-share systems, and almost 20 percent of American households that earn less than $30,000 a year don’t have bank accounts. Another reason, presumably, is that bike share memberships cost upwards of $100 a year or (in Portland’s case) $2.50 per nonmember ride.

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Bikesharing deal could be high-tech key to a low-car city

Posted on November 25th, 2015 at 11:46 am.

mobile girls
Open bike-share data and integrated payment systems can add up to something very big.
(Photo: M.Andersen)

The “single, supple mesh of mobility” that the government of Helsinki is hoping to use to “make car ownership pointless” by 2025 may be arising spontaneously and gradually in Portland.

For people reading between the lines, an announcement Tuesday from the North American Bike Share Association could lead to Portland becoming the first U.S. city where a single mobile app will be able to let you plan a trip and buy a ride from a bike share service, transit agency, carsharing company or ride-hailing service.

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