Omaha has three new bicycle sharing stations.
Earlier this week, the locations opened outside City Hall, at the Chamber of Commerce plaza at 13th and Howard Streets, and at the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge. They’re the first b-cycle stations outside of the Aksarben Village area and UNO.
Ben Turner, program director for Omaha B-Cycle, says the new stations put bicycle sharing in the heart of the city.
“Everybody visits, everyone who’s living here comes downtown at one time or another to work, play, or live. And so we wanted to add stations in to the downtown area to help demonstrate how bike sharing can work in Omaha.”
He says the program has health and transportation benefits.
“It’s another way to get around your city, another way to be active and be physically fit. And so what you have happen when you introduce bike sharing programs in to the community is your citizens become healthier. On the full scale, 60 to 70 stations, we think we could see some real results reducing air pollutants in our city. You know, we currently have clean air status with the federal government, but we’re close to going out of attainment. So reducing our car trips helps our air quality.”
Turner says funding from the National Park Service and Alegent Creighton Health allowed Omaha B-Cycle to add the three new stations. He says the ultimate goal is a system of 60 to 70 bicycle sharing stations throughout the city.
Omaha’s b-cycle program has logged more than 3,000 rides in its first two years. More information is available at Omaha.bcycle.com.