Bike Transport Available for Downtown, Knowledge Park and the Winthrop Campus
Friday, April 13th, 2018
Winthrop University is part of a new Bike Share program created to connect the downtown Rock Hill area.
The bicycle sharing concept originated in Europe in 1965 and has rapidly evolved in more than 50 countries around the world. It is designed to strengthen public wellness, increase traffic to downtown businesses and maximize a sense of community, all while reducing traffic and motor vehicle pollution.
The project is funded by Comporium Communications. There will be a fleet of 25 bikes with Comporium colors and logo available for people to use throughout the downtown area on a short-term basis. The program allows two hours of free bike time, and then after that there is a $6 per hour overage fee.
“Downtown Rock Hill is experiencing a revival and ensuring that the growth in our downtown area includes a pedestrian and bicycle-friendly approach has been a priority of civic leaders.” said Matthew Dosch, Comporium’s executive vice president and chief operating officer. “The Bike Share program is about connecting our community, promoting healthier lifestyles and it jumpstarts plans to bring more foot-powered traffic downtown.”
At Winthrop, two hubs will be available in the next couple of months, if not sooner, at the West Center and Richardson Hall.
Other hubs are located at:
• Corner of Main St. and Elizabeth Ave. (Fountain Park)
• Corner of Main St. and Dave Lyle Blvd. (The Anderson)
• Legal Remedy Brewing
Chris Johnson, Winthrop’s sustainability coordinator, said bike riding is an activity that everyone can enjoy. “Everyone remembers first learning how to ride a bike and the freedom that provided,” he said. “Today, we celebrate this new Bike Share program that will provide students, faculty, staff and the community a sustainable transportation choice that will renew that sense of freedom to ride a bike throughout Winthrop’s campus into downtown Rock Hill.”
How it works:
From the web or a free app on your smartphone, you can reserve a bike and pick it up at the bike corral. You can use your bicycle throughout the downtown Rock Hill area, which extends from Fountain Park in Old Town to Winthrop’s campus. The bikes are equipped with GPS tracking for data-gathering and to ensure their return.
Create an account by signing up via the website: http://gotchabike.com/comporium/ or directly downloading the Social Bicycles app. Once an account is created, you enter your six-digit account number and 4-digit PIN code on the keypad on the rear of the bike to unlock the bike’s u-bar. Once this process has been completed, you can take the bike and ride to your destination.
For convenience, bikes can also be reserved ahead of time via the website or app.
There’s the option of placing the bike on hold – parking it temporarily – and to finish the ride, you simply return the bike to a hub and lock it in place using the provided u-bar. The app also features a repair function that allows you to report maintenance issues directly from the bike’s keypad interface.
Reasons to start a program:
“Gotcha Bikes,” manufacturer of the smart bike, states that a Bike Share program can have a measurable impact on the health and wealth of the communities it serves. For example, when bikes were used as transportation instead of motor vehicles in Charleston, South Carolina, CO2 emissions were reduced by 37,548 pounds, $24,696 was saved in gas and 1,703,208 calories were burned by the riders. The transportation start-up also reports that since the launch of the program in Charleston last year, more than 5,826 residents and tourists have taken 19,522 trips on a Gotcha Bike.