Auburn University gears up to launch bike share program

(Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News)

AUBURN, AL (WSFA) - In just a couple weeks Auburn University will roll out its new bike share program.

Seventy-five customized, Auburn-themed bikes make up the War Eagle Bike Fleet.The bicycles will be distributed to 10 locations around campus to be used by students for a small fee.

"The parking on campus at Auburn has of course always been a problem. And parking itself is expensive. So we had to look at alternate ways for helping students get around on campus," said Don Andre, AU parking services director.

William Scott, an Auburn University student, tested out one of the bikes Thursday. He already seems impressed and eager to be able to access the bicycles.

"It is a really nice bike. It was smooth. It was a good ride. It notifies you when they need maintenance. So you can hop on a bike and never have to worry," Scott said.

"We have heard from other schools who have the bike share programs that they average 30 rides per day. We hope to top that and be able to get more bikes sooner," Andre said.

Thanks to technology, the process is simple. Using an app on their smart phones, students can reserve and check out the bikes. The first two hours are free and $5 per hour after with a maximum usage charge of $25 per day. Not only does this program look to benefit students who want to save time and money but also those who want to help the environment.

"It is certainly the most sustainable option. One of the reports I get from this system everyday is it tells me how many miles people use it. How much emission was saved, green house emission and so forth," Andre said.

Now it is just a matter of time before more students are peddling around. The launch date is scheduled for Jan. 31.

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