By: Jason Saab
Many college campuses across the country have began Share-a-Bike programs for their schools., and USFSP is trying to join the club. Although USF Tampa started a share a bike system back in 2011, USFSP has only recently began to push for one.
Share-a-Bike systems work well for college campuses where there is a high concentration of students without a way off campus. Giving the resident students the option of renting a bike will give them a way to get around campus, or to go explore downtown St. Petersburg.
USF Tampa’s Share-a-Bike program had to be revamped after the bikes kept disappearing, and no students were held responsible. Since then, there is now an accountability check out at the campus recreation center.
Students can bring in their own bikes to make repairs. There are also inner tubes and brake pads for purchase if they need replacing.
Our neighboring school, Eckerd College, also has a share a bike program. Named the Yellow Bike Program, bikes are located around campus that students can simply pick up and take to where they need to go. However this is the same system that lost USF Tampa several of it’s bikes.
USFSP student government senators started Bill S14-020 named “No Handlebars” in order to get the bike sharing program going. Student president Cody Boyer delivered the State of Student Government adresss in October, making mention of the bike sharing program and that they have finalized the initiative in order to achieve more sustainability.
The program will launch on Get on Board day, a yearly USFSP event to showcase the campus activities. There will be nine bikes in the beginning with since the idea is still being tested.
About $3,000 has been spent on the bikes and the system. The majority of the funds have not been spent. If the testing goes well, the bike-sharing program will be brought into full effect at USFSP.