Austin B-cycle adding more bikes and stations, increasing free ride time

Lobke Huijs, 19, left, rides Austin B-cycle  on South Congress Avenue with her parents Marion, middle, and Wim Huijs, all of Cincinnati, on Monday December 22, 2014.  JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Lobke Huijs, 19, left, rides Austin B-cycle on South Congress Avenue with her parents Marion, middle, and Wim Huijs, all of Cincinnati, on Monday December 22, 2014. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

 

Hot off a record year for ridership numbers, Austin B-cycle is adding more bike docks, more bikes and more no-charge bike time for users. It’s also changing the cost of a 24-hour pass.

The bike share service is adding capacity to its busiest stations, and installing four new stations in the next two months. Look for the new stations at 13th and San Antonio streets, Henderson between 6th and 9th streets, Congress Avenue at Cesar Chavez Street, and Barton Springs Road at Sterzing Street.

“Expanding stations and locations will mean better bike availability and less chance of finding full stations when you are returning bikes,” said Elliott McFadden, executive director of Austin B-cycle.

 

Austin B-cycle is adding more stations and more bikes in the next two months. Photo by Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman

Austin B-cycle is adding more stations and more bikes in the next two months. Photo by Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman

Starting this week, all Austin B-cycle passes and memberships also include 60 minutes of no-charge ride time for each trip, up from the 30-minute trip limit the system has had since launch. Trips longer than 60 minutes incur a $4 per 30-minute riding charge until the bike is returned.

Pam LeBlanc rides a B-cycle through downtown Austin. Photo by Reshma Kirpalani/Austin American-Statesman

Pam LeBlanc rides a B-cycle through downtown Austin. Photo by Reshma Kirpalani/Austin American-Statesman

More ride time was the number one improvement Austin B-cycle members requested in a November 2016 rider survey performed by Opinion Analysts, a local market research company.

“Our riders gave Austin B-cycle a 94 percent approval rating, but they reported being nervous about incurring extra fees with our previous ride limit,” McFadden said. “Now you can enjoy our fast, fun transportation option without worrying as much about watching the clock.”

Cost of a 24-hour access pass has increased from $8 to $12. All other pass rates remain the same.

Austin B-cycle is a public-private partnership between the City of Austin, the system owner, and Bike Share of Austin, the local 501c3 non-profit operator. Launched in December 2013, the system has recorded 539,939 trips, including more than 200,000 in 2016.


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