CHARLOTTE, NC (FOX 46 WJZY) — Bicycles are all over uptown Charlotte, and soon you could see more of them.
City Council voted Monday night in favor of helping B-Cycle, a bicycle rental program, expand. That means 25 more bike racks around the city, roughly doubling the number of B-Cycles. “They’re anywhere and everywhere, and you just pick one up and go,” said Bill Sowa, a Charlotte resident.
Victor Xie says he uses B-Cycle every day. “I’m taking advantage of it. I think it’s worth it,” he said.
The city will now contribute $450,000, an expense B-Cycle would eventually reimburse. The company would also get about $1.5 million in federal funds.
“The bikes, they’re super convenient,” said Jeremy Russell, “I think it’s good for tourists when they come into town if they want to take a look at Charlotte. For me, I’ve just never really had a use for them.”
Currently, B-Cycle has 214 bikes throughout uptown and the surrounding neighborhoods. The non-profit has some competition, though, and bike share is turning into bike wars.
“I don’t know too much about LimeBike,” said Sowa, “but it seems like they got a pretty good model here, dollar a ride.”
Cheaper for-profit options such as Spin and Limebike launched a month ago; they rolled 1,000 bikes into the Queen City. Charlotte B-Cycle ridership has grown from 34,000 trips in 2014 to 56,000 in 2016.