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by Allie Hickox
I proudly introduce the idea of implementing a bike share system. I have researched many different types of existing bike share companies and found that Zagster bike share would be a wonderful partner to be successful in this project. As a company they sell the hardware, being the bikes and stations, but they also help manage the program so there is no need to hire a lot of staff to make this reality. For my university’s campus, I found that the distributed bike share program would work best for our campus. This means the bikes will be available at multiple locations on the campus and one station in downtown granville, Ohio. The bikes are on demand at the stations without the need for a staff member to check out and check in the bikes. This allows for riders to truly use the bike as a transportation alternative for on demand, local trips. Because there are different locations of stations, riders can easily take one way trips. Today bike sharing is a popular idea, there are three different technologies and systems bike share companies use to be successful. I have found that the tech-on-bike bike share system would work the best for our community. This means that the technology to lock and secure the bikes are on the bikes themselves. The stations are designed to be the place where riders can rent and return the bikes once they are done with them. The way this works is the riders download the free Zagster bike share smartphone app which allows the riders to release the lock the secures the bike to the rack. This system allows more flexibility in the type of bikes available to rent, such as a mountain or a road bike. It also also for flexibility in the type of trips riders take. Because a station is not required to lock the bike, the tech-on-bike system allows for riders take ‘stopovers’ meaning they can stop and lock the bike wherever they are to run an errand or get some food without ending their trip. Another advantage of the tech-on-bike system is that riders may ‘overload’ a station meaning they can add bikes and secure them to the free sides of the stations. This lessens the burden for riders of finding another station if one is already full. In order to market the startup of my bike share I will set up a table outside Slayter Union, which is our campuses busiest cafe. I will have a bike, water bottles, and sunglasses as a display and a petition students and faculty can sign saying they would love a bike share system implemented on our campus. If I get 200 signatures, I will proceed with my process and add it to my proposal to my stakeholders. There are three stakeholders in which I will need their blessing to implement the bike share system: President of Denison University Dr. Adam S. Weinberg, Mayor of Granville Melissa Hartfield, and a campus security officer that would be willing to take over the maintenance, cleaning and emergency repairs of the bikes in exchange for a $500 bonus at the end of the year. The sources of funding for this project come from a student grant of up to $4000 and the Green Hill Revolving loan fund of up to $4000 as well. Click here to read Allie’s full action plan.